Judge Approves $110 Million Settlement For E-Ferol Infant Deaths

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Posted on 12th April 2010 by gjohnson in Uncategorized

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A federal judge last Friday approved a $110 million class-action settlement against the manufacturer and distributor of E-Ferol, an intravenous vitamin E supplement blamed for the deaths of roughly 40 premature babies in the mid-1980s.  http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5ilowHbtEzzgYkDtSfASw-w1Vo6mgD9F0J4Q02

The settlement for the 369 plaintiffs, who had filed suit in Wichita Falls in Texas, was approved by U.S. District Court Judge Sidney Fitzwater.

E-Ferol, recalled in April 1984 after being on the market just over four months, was marketed as drug to prevent or reduce the chances of blindness in premature infants. E-Ferol didn’t have FDA approval for that use.

E-Ferol’s maker, Carter-Glogau Laboratories of Glendale, Ariz., and its distributor, O’Neal, Jones & Feldman Pharmaceuticals of Maryland Heights, Mo., are no longer in business.

Carter-Glogau and its former president, Ronald Carter, were indicted in 1987 along with the ex-president of O’Neal, Larry Hiland, according to the Associated Press. They were found guilty of conspiracy, marketing an unapproved drug and misbranding a drug.

The two officials were sentenced to six months in jail, and the company was fined $130,000, AP reported.

The class-action suit, which includes the parents of 42 infants as plaintiffs, was filed in 2003.  There have been more than 100 previous settlements involving E-Ferol.

While federal health officials linked E-Ferol to 40 deaths, the attorney in the class action suit, Art Brender, put that number at 80, according to AP.

 E-Ferol caused liver and kidney failure in the babies.