Acetaminophen is a common over-the-counter medication used to relieve pain and reduce fever. Acetaminophen is the active ingredient in Tylenol and is sold generically under various brand names. Nearly 60 million Americans use medications containing acetaminophen weekly. The use of acetaminophen was considered safe to use by pregnant women and was often marketed as the only safe pain reliever to take while pregnant. However, recent studies have linked the use of acetaminophen while pregnant with an increased risk of the child being diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Lawsuits against companies such as Johnson & Johnson, Walmart, Costco, and Walgreens, who manufacture Tylenol and generic versions of acetaminophen, have increased due to new medical research. Risks of Acetaminophen Use During Pregnancy
Several recent medical studies have established a link between frequent acetaminophen use during pregnancy and higher rates of autism and ADHD diagnoses. One study, which monitored mothers and children for up to 11 years, determined that children regularly exposed to acetaminophen in-utero were 20% more likely to be diagnosed with autism. Another NIH-funded study tested umbilical cord blood samples for acetaminophen. Samples with higher acetaminophen levels were three times more likely to be diagnosed with autism.
Class Action Suit Filed
The results of these studies have led families to file lawsuits against large corporations throughout the US, claiming that these companies failed to warn the public of the dangers of using acetaminophen during pregnancy. In June 2022, lawyers representing plaintiffs across the US filed to consolidate these lawsuits into a new class-action multidistrict litigation. On October 5, 2022, the request was granted. Cases regarding Tylenol and acetaminophen use during pregnancy leading to autism and ADHD will now be part of the class action lawsuit with the Southern District of New York, overseen by Judge Denise L. Cote. Medications Included in the Lawsuit
You may be eligible to file a claim if you used any of the drugs listed here during pregnancy and had a child who was later diagnosed with autism or ADHD:
- Alka-Seltzer PLUS
- Robitussin Maximum Strength
- Sudafed Head Congestion
- Generic brand acetaminophen
This is only a list of a few of the most common medications used during pregnancy that contain acetaminophen. Contact our lawyers to see what other drugs may qualify.
To be eligible to file a lawsuit in this case, your child must be under the age of 17 and born before March 20, 2020. This is due to the difficulty of filing a claim within the statute of limitations for adult children diagnosed with autism and the implementation of the CARES Act, which refrained companies from amending warning labels. You will also need to show documentation, such as medical records from your OB/GYN, to indicate the use of acetaminophen during pregnancy. While there are no set parameters regarding how much exposure to the drug an expectant mother had, those who used acetaminophen at least a few times a week during pregnancy will have stronger cases.
May 2023 Update
Cases against acetaminophen manufacturers have been growing since the class action suit was filed in 2022, with nearly 50 lawsuits filed nationwide. In April, Tylenol manufacturers Johnson & Johnson attempted to dismiss the case based on the preemption doctrine. This motion was denied. The case will continue to move forward. Judge Cote also asked the FDA to determine whether warning labels regarding drug use during pregnancy and links to autism should be added to acetaminophen products.
Compensation for Acetaminophen Use and Autism
If your child has autism and you used Tylenol, generic acetaminophen, or other acetaminophen products, you may be eligible for compensation. As acetaminophen is one of the most commonly used drugs in the country, this case can potentially be one of the largest MDL cases in history. Call the law offices of Michael Brady Lynch at 888-585-5970 to discuss your case.
Date: May 08, 2023
Author: Brandon Salter