Yesterday, a Nevada jury awarded $99 million in punitive damages to three women who claimed their breast cancer was caused by Wyeth’s hormone replacement drugs Premarin and Prempro. The jury had originally awarded $134.5 million, which was reduced to $35 million after the jury indicated that the original verdict had also included punitive damages. So in the punitive damages phase, the jury tacked back on the $99 million.
These are 3 of the more than 5,000 lawsuits that have been filed around the country involving Premarin and Prempro, which are hormone replacement drugs intended to ease the symptoms of menopause.
A national study of hormone replacement therapy that had been conducted by the Women’s Health Initative in 2002, found that Prempro increased the risk of a number of ailments, including stroke, heart disease, and breast cancer. Incredibly, these drugs remain on the market.