Tuesday, December 06, 2011

December Yaz Litigation News: Bayer Withheld Yasmin Data From U.S., Former Agency Chief Tells Court

From Bloomberg:

A Bayer AG unit withheld from U.S. regulators findings by company researchers of increased reports of blood clots in users of its Yasmin birth-control pills, the former head of the Food and Drug Administration said.

David Kessler, the former FDA commissioner, in a document unsealed yesterday in federal court in Illinois, said Bayer didn’t include an analysis “that demonstrated an increase in the U.S. reporting rate” for venous thromboembolism, or clots, in a 2004 review of Yasmin’s safety provided to the agency.

The report also didn’t include an earlier draft opinion by company researchers that “spontaneous reporting data do signal a difference in the VTE rates for Yasmin” compared with other oral contraceptives, Kessler said, quoting the draft.

“Bayer presented a selective view of the data, and that presentation obscured the potential risks associated with Yasmin,” Kessler said.

Kessler’s report and four other expert opinions were released yesterday by lawyers representing former users of Bayer’s Yasmin family of contraceptives. The experts were paid by the plaintiffs’ lawyers, who submitted the reports to the FDA, which is considering safety findings on Yasmin and its sister product Yaz at a hearing Dec. 8.