Pennsylvania Record

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Multiple counts in lawsuit against American Regent, other pharmaceutical makers are dismissed

Federal Court

By Solange DeLisle | Feb 11, 2020


PHILADELPHIA — A federal judge in Pennsylvania has granted parts of a dismissal motion filed by three of six defendants in a lawsuit seeking damages for alleged harmful side effects from a medication treating iron deficiency.  

The Jan. 28 decision by Judge Wendy Beetlestone dismissed, both with prejudice and without, multiple claims brought against the three in a lawsuit surrounding Injectafer, which is prescribed to help treat anemic patients. 

In an order filed in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, Beetlestone dismissed eight of the 11 counts against American Regent Inc. (formerly known as Lutipold Pharmaceuticals Inc.), Daiichi Sankyo Inc., and Daiichi Sankyo U.S. Holdings Inc. for the plaintiff's failure to state a claim. 

Those counts included fraud, negligence, breach of express warranty, implied warranty, and consumer protection laws. Their request to dismiss negligent misrepresentation and failure to warn, however, were denied.

Katherine Crockett named those three companies and Luitpold Pharmaceuticals Inc., Vifor Pharmaceuticals Management Ltd., and Vifor Pharma-Asperva Pharmaceuticals Inc. in a lawsuit for the harmful side effects she says she experienced after receiving two doses of Injectafer. 

Crockett said she was diagnosed with severe hypophosphatemia (HPP). She claimed she suffered from nausea, pain, weakness and never-ending tiredness, and also had permanent injuries from taking the prescription to treat her iron deficiency, which forced her to miss months of work. She's seeking punitive damages.

The defendants had asked the court to dismiss all or part of the claims brought against them. Their argument centered mostly around failure-to-warn and defective design. They believe the accusations involving negligence are displaced by federal law, and that those that didn't included negligence could be blocked under a previous Pennsylvania Supreme Court case, Hahn v. Richter. Beetlestone agreed in part, dismissing eight of the 10 counts they had requested. 

In addition, Beetlestone granted Crockett's motion for leave to amend. Crockett now has to modify her complaint and submit it to the court prior to Feb. 25.

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