90 Million Settlement Paid by Pharmaceutical Company For Its Unfair and Deceptive Promotion of Diabetes Drug

GlaxoSmithKline has settled with 38 state attorney generals for $90 million in connection with its unfair and deceptive promotion of a diabetes drug, Avandia. Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan and Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum led the way in the allegations that GlaxoSmithKline marketed its brand-name medication, Avandia, to treat Type 2 diabetes.

The attorney generals alleged that GlaxoSmithKline misrepresented the drug’s safety or left out facts about its effects on cholesterol and cardiovascular health.

“Our investigation demonstrated that GlaxoSmithKline had little regard for the facts or for the health and safety of the patients it targeted with its misleading marketing,” Illinois Attorney General Madigan stated.

It was further alleged that there was no scientific evidence that the Avandia drug would lower cholesterol levels. The drug was associated with increased cardiovascular health risks even as the company claimed it offered healthier heart benefits. Illinois will receive $5 million of that settlement.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) restricted the use of Avandia in 2010. Avandia was considered the most popular diabetes drug in the world at one time. But the FDA took on Avandia and GlaxoSmithKline because of concerns that it increased the risk of heart attacks.
Sales of Avandia reached $2.5 billion in 2006. As a result of the settlement reached, GlaxoSmithKline will no longer be able to promote drugs unless the company receives FDA approval. GlaxoSmithKline will no longer be able to make claims about the safety of a drug not supported by scientific evidence or found in clinical trials. In addition, the company is now required to release summaries when drugs are tested or trials run. That procedure will be in effect for the next 8 years. The company did not comment as to the reports of this settlement.

Kreisman Law Offices has been handling pharmaceutical injury cases for individuals and families for more than 37 years, in and around Chicago, Cook County and its surrounding areas, including Glenview, Wheeling, Arlington Heights, Itasca, Chicago (Pilsen), LaGrange Park, Willowbrook, Chicago (Marquette Park), Countryside and Lemont, Ill.

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