A number of recent studies have established a connection between the use of Yasmin and an increased risk of serious health conditions, including pulmonary embolism. Yasmin was first approved by the FDA in 2001 and is currently manufactured by Bayer Healthcare Inc. Since its inception, Yasmin has become an increasingly popular form of birth control and has also been used for off-label purposes, including moderate acne control and treatment of the symptoms of premenstrual dysphoric disorder. It is estimated that one hundred million women worldwide use oral contraceptives as their preferred method of birth control. However, some women may be unaware of the dangerous side effects associated with many of these medications, particularly Yasmin.
As consumers, we are exposed to the deceptive practices of drug manufacturing companies on a daily basis. Any new drug is required to undergo extensive testing before it can be approved by the FDA. However, some pharmaceutical companies intentionally conceal the most serious side effects associated with their medications in order to ensure FDA approval. This puts consumers unknowingly and unwillingly at risk for unreasonable harm, robbing them of their right to make educated decisions about their medications based upon all the risks and benefits involved. While many women may be well aware of the benefits of the oral contraceptive medication, Yasmin, they may not know about the side effects associated with the drug, including an increased risk of pulmonary embolism.
Pulmonary embolism is a medical condition characterized by a blockage in one of the arteries leading to the lungs, disrupting the lung’s essential blood supply. Pulmonary embolisms typically occur when a blood clot travels through the bloodstream from another part of the body, usually the leg, and lodges itself in an artery. When blood flow is disrupted, that portion of the lung becomes damaged, and if it remains blocked for a long period of time, the lung will begin to die. The most common symptoms of a pulmonary embolism are chest pain, shortness of breath, cough, sweating, loss of consciousness, anxiety or apprehension, and this serious health condition is far more common than most people realize.
The connection between pulmonary embolism and the use of oral contraceptives like Yasmin is well established. Yasmin is one of a small group of oral contraceptives called “fourth generation” combination birth control pills, meaning it contains a newer type of synthetic progestin called drospirenone which, according to the FDA, can cause serious heart and health problems. The danger of drospirenone is that it increases the level of potassium in the blood, which can lead to hyperkalemia, a condition which may result in cardiac arrest and the formation of blood clots anywhere in the body. In fact, according to a 1999 study published in the British Medical Journal, individuals who consume drospirenone are 6.3 times more likely to develop blood clots, which can lead to life-threatening conditions like pulmonary embolism, and even death.
In 2008, the FDA composed a warning letter to Bayer citing the company for the use of deception in many of their Yasmin television advertisements. According to the letter, these commercials implied that Yasmin was superior to other combination birth control pills while simultaneously distracting viewers from the dangerous side effects linked to the drug. In 2009, another letter was sent by the FDA criticizing Bayer for using flawed testing techniques in a German Yasmin manufacturing facility. Apparently, this particular facility was averaging reports instead of reporting results for individual batches of Yasmin. This technique may have allowed some of the batches to fall outside the legal parameters and at least eight of these batches had already been shipped to the United States.
The abnormal development of blood clots is extremely dangerous, as it can lead to life-threatening and sometimes fatal conditions, including heart attack, stroke and pulmonary embolism. Pulmonary embolism is the third most common cause of death in hospitalized patients, with at least 650,000 cases occurring annually, many of which are tragically undiagnosed. Victims of pulmonary embolism related to the use of Yasmin are not at fault. Drug manufacturing companies should be held responsible for the injuries sustained by consumers who unknowingly put themselves at risk for serious illness and even death by taking their medications.
The only way to stand up to the deceptive practices of big drug companies and receive reimbursement for your injuries is to contact a Yasmin attorney to discuss the benefits of filing a defective drug lawsuit. A number of Yasmin lawsuits are already pending against Bayer, and hundreds of Yasmin injury cases are currently being investigated in the United States. If you or a loved one has suffered from a pulmonary embolism and you believe Yasmin to be the cause, a Yasmin lawyer can help you collect the compensation you deserve. Qualified Yasmin attorneys are experienced in defective drug litigation and have the knowledge and tools necessary to help you develop a successful Yasmin case.