Pfizer notches key victory in first of many Zoloft birth-defect cases
- Jurors in St. Louis rejected the claim that Logyn Pesante's heart abnormalities were related to his mother taking Pfizer's Zoloft (sertraline) during her pregnancy.
- There are currently more than 1,000 lawsuits against Pfizer related to failure to disclose this risk. Many of them are from women who took the drug in the mid-2000's.
- Pfizer's lawyers are confident that the disposition of this first case bodes well for overall legal outcomes for Pfizer in this situation.
One strong basis for the suits against Pfizer is a May 2014 internal report at Pfizer suggesting that women taking Zoloft (sertraline) had an increased risk of having babies with heart defects. Much of the data relates back to the mid-2000's when Zoloft was a $2.6 billion top-seller; however, lawyers for Pfizer contend that the studies showing a link between Zoloft and birth defects are not credible and that the report was interpreted in a way that would create the basis for a lawsuit.
Although Pfizer prevailed in this suit, it's not over yet. There are similar suits in both federal and state courts in Philadelphia.