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Why is Seroquel Still on the Market After All These Lawsuits?

Seroquel is the top-selling antipsychotic drug in the United States. Seroquel is the eighth best-selling drug in the world, with more than $4 billion in sales last year.

But attorney generals in Pennsylvania, Montana, and Arkansas contend that Seroquel’s rise resulted from an illegal marketing campaign designed to promote the powerful drug for unapproved uses, including to some of our most vulnerable: children and the elderly with dementia. Moreover, Seroquel has been linked with a host of health problems, including diabetes and pancreatitis. As a result, there are over 10,000 plaintiffs in a Seroquel class-action lawsuit.

With these Seroquel lawsuits, how has Seroquel stayed on the market? Besides the obvious – $4 billion a year in annual revenue can buy up a lot of Seroquel-related diabetes and pancreatitis settlements. Dr. Robert Rosenheck, a psychiatry professor at Yale, has the answer: “You had 10 to 15 years of marketing in which the companies controlled the journal publications, controlled the speakers’ bureaus, controlled the dinners, controlled the patient advocacy groups, all of which communicated these drugs were a breakthrough. But there was little independent research.”

For the millions of people on Seroquel, there has been “little independent research” of the drug. This is just plain frightening, right?