Yaz, Yasmin, Beyaz, and Ocella

In February of 2014, drug maker Bayer announced their agreement to pay more than $1.69 billion to an estimated 8,250 women who suffered serious complications after taking drospirenone-based birth control pills.

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Birth control pills, Yaz and Yasmin, as well as their off-brand counterparts Beyaz and Ocella are the only oral birth control pills in the United States that contain drospirenone. They have been known to increase the risk of serious blood and heart-related injury in otherwise healthy women. Because these pills contain this progestin, the birth control increases blood potassium levels—potentially leading to pulmonary embolism, stroke, or blood clot.

Minimizing Side Effects In Ads

It was alleged that drug manufacturers, Bayer and Berlex (now a Bayer subsidiary) failed to adequately research potential side effects of their birth control pills. As a result, the companies marketed the birth control without proper warnings in their Yaz and Yasmin commercials that aired between 2003 and 2008.

In 2003, The FDA warned Berlex that the advertisements for Yasmin were downplaying the potential risks associated with taking the drug by implying that it was more effective than competitor birth controls.

Five years later, Bayer came under fire after the FDA reprimanded them for their deceptive Yaz commercials. According to the ad in question, one of the benefits of taking Yaz, was that it would treat moderate to severe acne, and PMS. However, the FDA had only approved Yaz for treating moderate acne and PMDD—a more severe form of PMS which actually interferes with day-to-day activities.

Bayer corrected their advertising campaign the following year as part of an agreement with the FDA. Additionally, all Yaz advertisements after that point will be submitted to federal regulators before being aired. With this process, women will be able to make a more informed decision before electing to take the birth control.

While the drugs were marketed as a better form of birth control, lawsuits allege that the potential risks greatly outweigh the benefits of the drug.

Blood Clots: Arterial Embolisms

Bayer, the manufacturer of Yaz, faces over 4,600 claims involving a venous or arterial thromboembolism injury: more commonly known as a blood clot.
Blood clots are exceedingly painful. If you have taken Yaz birth control and experience coldness, decreased pulse, muscle spasm, or tingling of a limb, contact a medical professional immediately. Without treatment, arterial embolism has a 25%-30% mortality rate. Prognosis often depends on several factors including location of the clot, and how much blood flow has been blocked.

Blood Clot In The Lung: Pulmonary Embolism

A Pulmonary Embolism is a blockage or clot of the main artery of the lung, or one of its branches. Symptoms of Pulmonary Embolism are typically quite sudden. A victim may experience shortness of breath, rapid breathing, chest pain, and hemoptysis (couching up blood).

Because these symptoms often accompany several medical conditions, pulmonary embolism can often be missed. If you or a loved one experiences a sudden onset of symptoms after starting a new birth control regimen, it is important to let medical professionals know what the victim has been taking.

St. Louis Birth Control Side Effect Lawyers

The decision to begin a birth control regimen is one that most women will face at some point. While the benefits of taking these pills are huge, it is important for companies to be honest about what women should expect from taking these pills. This includes benefits and risks. Do your research before taking any drug that alters hormone levels.

If you have experienced an unfortunate side effect after taking Yaz, Yasmin, or a similar birth control drug, contact a St. Louis personal injury lawyer at Schultz & Myers Personal Injury Lawyers. Drug injury is a complex area of law, and it is important to hire an attorney who has experience in dealing with birth control cases. Call today if you have any questions about birth control side effects and drug injury lawsuits. 314.444.4444.


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