Indiana Women Say Yaz Is Bad

A group of women from Indiana have begun a suit against the producers of a very popular type of birth control pill. Over fifty women are taking part in the lawsuit against the makers of the Yasmin oral contraceptive pill, Bayer Healthcare Corporation. The women claim that while taking this pill, called Yaz, Yasmin, or Ocella, they experienced some very scary medical problems, for instance, heart attacks and strokes.

Package Inserts

Bayer says that Yaz is just as safe as other oral contraceptive medications, all of which come with inserted leaflets, detailing such side effects. But a prosecution lawyer says it isn't so: Yaz is a much more aggressive form of hormone-based contraception than earlier formulations of The Pill. The attorneys handling the case are all based in Indianapolis, but the women they represent come from all across the United States. Last week, the Indianapolis Federal Court received the latest round of case submissions

Of the 39 women represented by William Riley, of Price, Waicukauski, & Riley, most have had to have their gallbladders removed. Riley has publicly stated that Bayer Pharmaceuticals and others involved in marketing the Yasmin contraceptive knew that their products were capable of causing serious health issues in those who took these medications. "They're not doing adequate clinical studies and they are aggressively marketing this to women, young women," said Riley.

Riley was asked if he would tell the women in his life they should stop taking Yaz. His response was adamant, "I would."

Gallbladder Effects

One Indiana physician, says he plans to continue ordering the drug for women in his practice, though he would like to see more studies on the effects of oral contraceptives, including Yaz, and in particular, on how they might affect the gallbladder. "Most of the studies as far as birth control go actually look more at strokes, heart attacks, blood clots. So gallbladders are an area where I think further study needs to be done," he explains.

Effective Job

This doctor states that FDA records show that 50 deaths were reported between 2004 and 2008 for patients who had been taking Yaz and Yasmin birth control pills. But Bayer says that the warning labels and package inserts do an effective job of warning patients of the potential for serious side effects, including death.

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