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Makers of Paxil, Zoloft Win
Law Center | 2008/04/25 07:48
pIn a significant victory for drug manufacturers, the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that the makers of Paxil and Zoloft cannot be sued for failing to warn of a risk of suicide because the Food amp; Drug Administration has explicitly refused to order such warnings.

Voting 2-1 in a pair of cases where the lower courts issued conflicting rulings, the 3rd Circuit found that such lawsuits must be pre-empted because they directly conflict with action already taken by the FDA. /ppWriting for the majority, 3rd Circuit Judge Dolores K. Sloviter said the FDA has actively monitored the possible risk of suicide from taking the class of antidepressant drugs known as selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors, or SSRIs, for two decades, and concluded that the suicide warnings demanded by plaintiffs are without scientific basis and would therefore be false and misleading. /ppBut Sloviter, who was joined by visiting Judge Jane A. Restani of the U.S. Court of International Trade, emphasized that the ruling was a narrow one. /ppOur holding is limited to circumstances in which the FDA has publicly rejected the need for a warning that plaintiffs argue state law requires, Sloviter wrote in Colacicco v. Apotex Inc. /ppIn dissent, 3rd Circuit Judge Thomas L. Ambro said he would have allowed both cases to go forward. /p


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