Woman sues Amitriptyline makers, distributors over birth defects

Dan Harkins Jun. 24, 2015, 8:59am


A woman claims she was born with defects and suffered injuries because her mother took the prescription drug Amitriptyline.

Helena Peoples filed a complaint on May 5 in St. Clair County Circuit Court against Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp., successor to Sandoz Inc. (Sandoz Pharmaceuticals Corp.), Kare Pharmacy Inc., Roche Laboratories Inc. and Walgreen Co.

The plaintiff's mother, Heaunitia Holman Peoples, was prescribed the drug Amitriptyline from July 1, 1994 to June 1995. It was made by Novartis and distributed by both of the other defendants.

During this period, the lawsuit states, Peoples "sustained an adverse reaction to the drug," which caused her injury.

Novartis is accused of failing to test the product through animal and clinical trials; test the effect of the drug during pregnancy; warn of its effect during pregnancy; and warn of the defects possible to unborn children in utero. 

As a result, the lawsuit states, Peoples sustained birth defects and permanent damage.

The plaintiff cites Novartis and Roche with negligence, strict liability and implied warranties, and seeks in excess of $150,000, plus costs, from both of those defendants. The two pharmacies are both cited with negligence and implied warranties, and seeks in excess of $100,000, plus costs from each other those defendants.

The plaintiff is represented by Michael McGlynn at McGlynn and McGlynn in Belleville.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number 15-L-270.

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