A Philadelphia judge has urged the state Superior Court to affirm a $500,000 verdict awarded last year to a man who allegedly suffered excess growth of breast tissue as a result of taking the antipsychotic drug Risperdal.
The case presents the first chance for a state appeals court to address whether punitive damages claims should be allowed in the Risperdal trials.
During closing arguments, McCarter & English attorney Michael Kelly, who represented Janssen, told the jury that the plaintiff’s arguments had been “a lot of noise,” and the plaintiff never provided any evidence linking the drug to gynecomastia. Specifically, Kelly said the timeline of when Stange said he began noticing excessive breast growth did not match up with the time he took Risperdal, and none of the doctors were able to prove Stange’s gynecomastia was a result of the drug.
According to Kelly, doctors agree that most gynecomastia is caused by puberty, and 10 to 20 percent of those instances result in the creation of permanent tissue.