Seroquel is a powerful antipsychotic drug with limited effectiveness for its approved uses. Add in a long list of horrible personal injuries that are side effects. Put the drug in the hands of a devious marketing team and unethical corporate executives, and you have a prescription for widespread personal injuries, resulting in 9000 lawsuits against AstraZeneca, the British firm that makes and deceptively markets the drug.Two injurious side effects of Seroquel are diabetes and extreme weight gain, and Seroquel users have also reported lethargy, hair loss, constipation, thickening of blood vessels, reduced blood flow to eyes and feet, blindness, and foot infections that progress to gangrene and amputations.
Some Seroquel users will permanently suffer from Tardive Dyskinesia, which is a crippling condition that doesn’t occur in nature. Its only identified cause is the long-term use of neuroleptic drugs such as Seroquel, and no cure exists. Victims of Tardive Dyskinesia suffer a loss of muscle control that can result in grimacing, lip smacking, and rapid eye blinking. Victims may also have twitching fingers that make them look as though they’re playing an air guitar or an invisible piano. There is no remedy and no relief from these horrendous injuries triggered by Seroquel.
In the worst possible outcome linked to Seroquel, a 4-year old Massachusetts girl named Rebecca Riley died after taking a chemical cocktail consisting of Seroquel, Depakote, a mood medication, and Clonidine, a blood pressure drug.
A child psychiatrist had diagnosed Rebecca with both ADHD and bipolar disorder when she was less than 2 1/2 years old, and pharmaceutical companies were making huge profits by drugging her and the rest of her family. For Rebecca’s remaining year and a half, Seroquel was a part of her daily existence, even though Seroquel’s website states emphatically, “SEROQUEL XR and SEROQUEL are not approved for patients under the age of 18 years.”
Heart attacks and Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome are two more grave dangers that Seroquel users face. In other cases, survivors of elderly nursing home patients have linked their loves ones’ deaths to Seroquel, even though the FDA issued a warning against the use of this entire category of drugs for elderly patients in 2005.
AstraZeneca is responsible for the damage done to users of Seroquel, but the manufacturer has not acted alone. The FDA has approved the drug only for treatment of bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, and users need a prescription to get Seroquel. However, doctors, such as the one who treated Rebecca Riley, routinely prescribe the drug “off label” for such conditions as post-traumatic stress, depression, anxiety, and insomnia. Doctors can legally write these prescriptions, but they do so with no studies to show that a drug is effective in treating an “off label” condition or that the drug is safe for the patient population receiving it.
Despite the illnesses and deaths linked to Seroquel, sales reached $4.5 billion in 2008, and internal documents from AstraZeneca show that the company has gone to such legal lengths to protect its profits that it has hidden studies that show the drug’s dangers while it publicized any study that found beneficial effects.
The list of problems associated with Seroquel is long, but none of them come as any surprise to AstraZaneca. As early as 2000, the company knew that the drug showed conclusive links to diabetes and weight gain, but it chose to conceal the information from the American public. And, in 2002, AstraZeneca actually issued a warning to Japanese physicians about Seroquel’s dangers, but did not make the same information available to doctors in the United States.
AstraZeneca has known for more than a decade that Seroquel is no more effective than previous drugs that treated the same conditions. AstraZeneca has also known that Seroquel poses grave dangers to many users. Now, AstraZeneca is fighting in court to keep this evidence confidential, and the company thoroughly deserves all the lawsuits that it’s facing.
If Seroquel has harmed you or a loved one, please contact us to protect yourself and your family.
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