Michigan Woman Suffers Yaz Pulmonary Embolism
Another plaintiff has joined the Yaz multidistrict litigation (MDL) currently underway in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois. Michigan resident Karen Mathies is one of an estimated 14,000 women now seeking compensation for Yaz injuries. According to her complaint, which was filed on July 5, 2012, Mathies began taking Bayer’s prescription oral contraceptive on February 24, 2009. Only two months later, on April 23, 2009, she reportedly suffered a life-threatening Yaz pulmonary embolism that left her with permanent injuries.
A pulmonary embolism is the sudden blockage of an artery of the lung by a blood clot. It is most commonly caused by blood clots that develop in veins far from the surface of the body, usually in the legs, which is also known as deep vein thrombosis (DVT).
Yaz has long been associated with a high risk of developing blood clots and DVT, leading to thousands of injuries and even deaths among otherwise healthy women, some as young as 17 years old. In one four-year period, from 2004 to 2008, over fifty Yaz-related deaths were reported to the FDA.
Yaz pulmonary embolism
The thousands of plaintiffs now seeking compensation for Yaz injuries have suffered a range of adverse side effects from the drug. In addition to pulmonary embolism, the blood clots caused by Yas and Yasmin can cause heart attack and stroke, as well as pain and other complications associated with DVT.
Yaz and Yasmin have also been linked to an increase in gallbladder disease. The synthetic hormone used in Yaz, known as drospirenone, acts as a diuretic by blocking receptors in the kidney. A side effect of this feature is increased dehydration, which can lead to the formation of gallstones. Another effect of blocking the receptor (a hormone known as aldosterone) is an increase of blood cholesterol. Excess cholesterol, calcium, and phosphate in the gallbladder significantly heighten the risk of gallbladder disease.
Yaz lawyer team engaged in settlement negotiations
For the past several months, Chief Judge David R. Herndon has been encouraging the parties in the Yaz MDL to reach settlements that obviate the need for trials. To that end, Judge Herndon appointed a Special Master to mediate between Bayer and the plaintiffs. So far, Bayer has agreed to pay over $142 million to settle 700 cases. In the absence of further settlement progress, court watchers expect the first bellwether trials to begin in September of 2012.