Duragesic Pain Patch Case-Jury Awards Nearly $16.6M in Damages

By November 25, 2008Jury Verdicts

Last month, a Chicago jury awarded nearly $16.6 million to the family of a mother who died while using a Duragesic pain patch, the Associated Press reports.
Janice DiCosolo, a 38-year-old mother of three, died on Feb. 15, 2004. She had been prescribed a Duragesic patch by her doctor to help manage the constant pain she suffered as a result of reflex sympathetic dystrophy, a neurological condition.
Duragesic, made by two Johnson & Johnson subsidiaries, contains the gel form of the powerful drug fentanyl, which is 100-times stronger than morphine.
DiCosolo’s family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Titusville, N.J.-based Janssen Pharmaceutica Inc. and Mountain View, Calif.-based ALZA Corporation. The family alleged that the companies knew the patches leaked fentanyl in large enough doses to kill patients.
The patch DiCosolo was using was part of a larger group of defective patches that were recalled in 2004 by the Food and Drug Administration.
The defense experts who inspected the patch DiCosolo used asserted it was not defective and claimed the woman’s death was caused by mix of incompatible medications.
However, the jury disagreed. After a three-week trial, jurors concluded that the fentanyl patch leaked a fatal dose of the drug and killed DiCosolo. They awarded the family $16,560,000.
In 2005 and 2007, the FDA issued public health warnings after receiving reports of serious injuries and deaths in patients who used the fentanyl pain patches.
If you have experienced complications after using a fentanyl pain patch such as Duragesic or a family member has become ill or died after using a fentanyl pain patch, please contact our attorneys for legal assistance as soon as possible.
The lawyers of Carey, Danis & Lowe are experienced in helping people injured by dangerous drugs. We will seek compensation for past and future medical expenses, past and future wages, pain and suffering, disability and other damages. We also represent family members in wrongful death cases. For more information, fill out our online contact form or call 314-678-3400 or toll free 877-678-3400.