What is Ortho Evra?
Ortho Evra is a transdermal (skin) patch approved for birth control that releases norelgestromin and ethinyl estradiol)into the blood stream to prevent pregnancy. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved Ortho Evra, manufactured by Ortho McNeil n November 2001. In April 2004, an 18-year-old New York fashion student died while using the Ortho Evra patch. According to officials for the FDA and Ortho McNeil, the death is the first linked to the contraceptive patch and was linked to a blood clot. In November 2005, Ortho McNeil issued a warning to millions of women revealing that the patch exposes them to significant amounts of estrogen and may put them at greater risk of developing blood clots. An internal Ortho McNeil memo shows that the company refused in 2003 to fund a study comparing its Ortho Evra patch to its Ortho-Cyclen pill, because of concerns there was too high a chance that study may not produce a positive result.
Several class-action lawsuits are currently being investigated against Ortho-McNeil. The investigation concerns whether Ortho-McNeil has failed to disclose that the side effects and risks of blood clots, stroke or heart attacks are greater for women using the patch than for women using birth control pills. In fact, in July 2005, it was reported that Ortho-McNeil was aware of at least a dozen women, most in their late teens and twenties who died in 2004 due to blood clots related to the use of the Ortho Evra Patch. Dozens more allegedly survived strokes and other blood-clot related side effects according to 16,000 federal drug reports filed with the FDA.
Ortho-McNeil has already settled many lawsuits pending against the company, for millions of dollars. Currently, there are over 100 additional cases pending across the U.S. that Ortho-McNeil appears to be interested in resolving.
If you are taking or took Ortho-Evra and have suffered serious injuries, such as blood clots, contact a local attorney; you may be eligible to join a class-action lawsuit or bring an individual suit against Ortho-McNeil to receive compensation for your injuries.