Court rules that hormone replacement therapy plaintiff should not suffer due to statute of limitations
By Dean I Weitzman, Esq. on January 15th, 2010
Patients who have sued in connection with serious injuries from hormone replacement therapies in the last decade just received a potentially promising ruling from the Pennsylvania Superior Court.
In a decision handed down on Dec. 31, 2009 in the case Simon v. Wyeth, the court said that a two-year statute of limitations that forced the reversal of an earlier $1.5 million damage award for the injured plaintiff should not have been applied, according to a news story earlier this week in The Legal Intelligencer.
The new court ruling in support of the plaintiff is clear, the court said: the injured patient wouldn’t have had any reason to suspect that her injuries came from the hormone replacement therapy until medical studies came out later, detailing such connections. Those links were publicized later in a July 2002 Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) report from the National Institutes of Health, according to The Legal Intelligencer. The WHI study linked the use of hormone drugs such as estrogen and progestin to an increased risk of breast cancer, the story said.
The plaintiff “had no reason even to suspect that there was a link between her use of [hormone replacement therapy] and breast cancer until the WHI report was released,” Superior Court Judge Mary Jane Bowes wrote in the court’s opinion. In addition, because none of the doctors who prescribed the therapy never told her there could be a link between her HRT and breast cancer … “it defies logic” that the plaintiff should have been aware of the risks of hormone replacement therapy, Bowes wrote.
This ruling is important for victims of cancers and health complications caused by hormone replacement therapy.
If you are involved in such a case, even if your case has already been litigated or dismissed, you should talk to your attorney and find out how your case could be affected by this latest wrinkle in hormone replacement therapy case law.
There is a good chance that your case could be impacted.