Woman alleges drug Abilify caused her to gamble complusively

By Travis Zuellig | Jan 20, 2016


SAN FRANCISCO – A Daly City woman is suing three companies on allegations that a pharmaceutical drug caused her to compulsively gamble.

Stephanie Pamintuan filed a lawsuit Jan. 15 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California against Bristol-Myers Squibb Co., Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co. LTD, and Otsuka America Pharmaceutical Inc., citing strict liability, breach of express warranty and breach of implied warranty, among others.

According to the complaint, the defendants manufacture, promote, and sell the prescription drug Abilify, which treats depression, bipolar I disorder and schizophrenia. Pamintuan alleges that Abilify harmed her, as the drug caused compulsive behaviors such as compulsive gambling, which led to financial, mental and physical damages. The complaint states that Pamintuan began taking Abilify in October 2011, began the compulsive gambling soon afterward, and the behavior stopped when she discontinued taking the drug in October 2013.

Labeling for the drug in Europe and Canada warns against the risk of “pathological gambling” when taking the drug, but there is no such warning for users in the United States, the complaint states.

Pamintuan is seeking actual damages, cost for treatment for injuries allegedly caused by Abilify, injuctive relief, and damages for her allegedly neuropsychiatric, mental, physical, and economic pain and suffering. Gary L. Wilson and Megan J. McKenzie of Robins Kaplan LLP in Minneapolis are representing the plaintiff.

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California 4:16-cv-00254-DMR

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