On October 4, 2016, HGD Associate Amanda Williamson was appointed by U.S. District Judge Nancy Rosenstengel to the Plaintiff’s Executive Committee for In re Depakote pending in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Illinois. An executive committee is one tool a district court can utilize to bring order to large complex cases involving multiple plaintiffs represented by different attorneys. The Depakote Executive Committee will work at the direction of Lead Counsel towards resolving the pending 129 cases, involving approximately 698 plaintiffs, on the court’s docket.
Depakote is an anticonvulsant medication approved to treat patients with epilepsy who have certain types of seizures. It is also approved for migraine prophylaxis and treatment of acute manic or mixed episodes associated with bipolar disorder. The pending cases before Judge Rosenstengel allege the manufacturer of Depakote, Abbott Laboratories, Inc., failed to properly warn patients and doctors of the increased risk of major birth defects associated with Depakote use during pregnancy. Research has found higher than expected rates of babies born with cleft lips, cleft palates, hand deformations, heart malformations, spina bifida, skeletal defects, neural tube malformations, growth retardation and even fetal death when the drug is used during pregnancy.
If you took Depakote during pregnancy and your child developed any kind of birth defects, contact HGD attorney Amanda Williamson for more information.