Litigation

Pennsylvania Jury Finds Prempro Did Not Cause Women's Breast Cancers

PHILADELPHIA - (Mealey's) A Pennsylvania Common Pleas Court jury on Aug. 18 decided that two women's use of Wyeth's Prempro did not cause them to develop breast cancer and that the maker of the hormone replacement therapy should not be required to pay them damages for their illnesses (Sharon Buxley, et al. v. Wyeth, No. 00202, Pa. Comm. Pls., Philadelphia Co.).

According to published reports, the seven-man, five-woman jury deliberated for nearly four hours before finding that Wyeth's hormone replacement therapy was not a "factual cause" of Sharon Buxley's and Joy Henry's injuries.  Philadelphia County Common Pleas Court Judge James Murray Lynn presided over the trial.

According to their lawsuit, Buxton used Prempro for six years before being diagnosed with breast cancer and Henry used the drug for eight years before her diagnosis.  The plaintiffs asserted that Wyeth, now a subsidiary of Pfizer Inc., failed to adequately warn users about the risk of breast cancer associated with the hormone replacement therapy.  The women sought at least $100,000 in damages.

The verdict is a second consecutive win for the defense.  On Feb. 24, a Philadelphia County Court of Common Pleas jury found that an Indiana woman's use of Prempro did not cause her to develop breast cancer, but it did find that the manufacturer failed to provide adequate warnings with the drug and that those inadequate warnings influenced her prescribing physician's decision to prescribe the hormone replacement therapy.

[Editor's Note:  Full coverage will be in the September issue of Mealey's Litigation Report: Hormone Replacement Therapy.  For all of your legal news needs, please visit www.lexisnexis.com/mealeys.]

For more information, call editor Shane Dilworth at 610-205-1106, or e-mail him at Shane.Dilworth@lexisnexis.com.