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Pharmaceuticals / Commercial Operations

Judge Denies New Lawsuit for Parents Who Claimed Depakote Birth Defects

Nov. 30, 2017

An Ohio federal judge denied a new trial to plaintiffs in a lawsuit against Abbott Laboratories who claimed their son was born with birth defects because the company failed to warn of the risks associated with its anticonvulsant drug Depakote.

Kevin and Christin Hutchens sued the drugmaker in 2014 and a jury ruled against them in February of this year. In their motion for a new trial, the Hutchenses claimed the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio erred in issuing the jury instructions that kept it from considering certain admissible evidence.

The plaintiffs cited the court’s exclusion of medical records for their child, which included impressions by the child’s treating geneticist that the diagnosis was “likely” fetal valproate syndrome. 

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