Massive drug maker Pfizer is facing a wrongful death complaint filed by a couple who claims that one of the company’s anti-depressant drugs caused the death of their child. The mother was pregnant while taking Zoloft, a popular medication to battle depression with.
The couple contends that their child died on the day of her birth, Jan. 6, 2010, due to birth defects caused by the use of the medication while pregnant. Among those birth defects were malformations in the brain, pulmonary hypoplasia and hydrocephalus.
The lawsuit argues that Pfizer knew, or should have known, that the medication could be dangerous to a developing fetus since it crosses the placenta. But the company failed to disclose this risk to the Food and Drug Administration, resulting in birth defects that ultimately cost the couple’s daughter her life.
In total, the lawsuit accuses Pfizer of a range of poor actions, including negligence, fraud, constructive fraud, gross negligence, misrepresentation and product liability, among other counts. The suit alleges loss of consortium, wrongful death and other violations of the Consumer Fraud Act
The couple is seeking actual damages as well as damages for mental and emotional stress, and legal fees, along with a number of other damages, such as pre- and post-judgment interest and impaired earning capacity.
This is far from the only current legal action against Pfizer, which is having some of its products liability litigation handled in Pennsylvania District Court.
The couple’s wrongful death claim comes almost two years to the date of the death of their daughter.
Source: Pennsylvania Record, “Wisconsin couple files Zoloft wrongful death claim in Phila. federal court,” Jon Campisi, Jan. 4, 2013