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Paxil Antidepressant Medication Users v GlaxoSmithKline Plc

Case Category Amount Available Date Filed Stage
Drugs / Medical No amount specified 8/24/2001 Filing  
Paxil Users Claim Maker Hid Drug's Addictive Nature
A class action has been filed against GlaxoSmithKline Plc, the British pharmaceutical giant that makes the antidepressant Paxil (paroxetine), on behalf of all people in the United States who were prescribed Paxil and who later suffered withdrawal reactions when they attempted to stop taking the drug.The action claims that GlaxoSmithKline knew that some patients prescribed Paxil would suffer severe withdrawal reactions but failed to warn patients or physicians of this danger. The action asserts claims for fraud and deceit, negligence, strict liability, and breach of warranty. Both compensatory and punitive damages are sought.

Withdrawal reactions suffered by patients attempting to discontinue Paxil include jolting electric "zaps," dizziness, light-headedness, vertigo, lack of coordination, gait disturbances, sweating, extreme nausea, vomiting, high fever, abdominal discomfort, flu symptoms, anorexia, diarrhea, agitation, tremulousness, irritability, aggression, sleep disturbance, nightmares, tremor, confusion, memory and concentration difficulties, lethargy, malaise, weakness, fatigue, paraesthesias, ataxia, and myalgia.

Paxil, which was introduced into the U.S. market on December 29, 1992, is a well known antidepressant medication in the same class as Zoloft and Prozac (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs). Paxil is approved for marketing in the U.S. for conditions such as depression, obsessive compulsive disorder, panic disorder, and social anxiety disorder.

According to the plaintiffs, GlaxoSmithKline has known for years that the distinct characteristics of Paxil make it prone to cause withdrawal reactions when discontinued. According to World Health Organization data obtained by the class members, Paxil has the highest rate of adverse experiences during withdrawal of any antidepressant drug in the world.

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Prozac, Zoloft, and Paxil Antidepressant Users v Eli Lilly, Pfizer, and GlaxoSmithKline
Some 200 legal actions have been filed against Eli Lilly, Pfizer, and GlaxoSmithKline, the manufacturers of Prozac (fluoxetine), Zoloft (sertraline), and Paxil (paroxetine), respectively, to recover for suicides or homicides--some completed, some only attempted--by patients in the first few days or weeks after they were prescribed one of these drugs.



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