Thalidomide Maker’s Apology Comes Too Late

by William J. “Will” Maiberger, Jr. on 10/10/2012

Earlier this month, the German company that was responsible for developing the morning sickness drug, Thalidomide that resulted in thousands of babies being born with deformities, issued an apology for the catastrophic injuries that its product caused.  For the thousands of children who suffered birth defects as a result of the drug, the apology is far too little, too late.

The company, Gruenenthal developed Thalidomide back in the 50s, and marketed it as a drug for pregnant women suffering from morning sickness.  The drug was very popular in the 50s and 60s as a treatment for nausea.  Thalidomide was sold in Germany as Contergan and elsewhere around the world as Distaval. 

Unknown to the women, however, they were at risk of delivering babies with severe physical deformities.  Approximately 10,000 babies worldwide were born with birth defects.  In most of these babies, the defects were in the form of missing or malformed arms or legs.  Many of the babies that were born with these defects are still alive. 

The German drug maker had to pay €500 million to victims, and payments were completed only in 2010. The drug maker insists that it manufactured the drug in accordance with all industrial standards, and took into consideration all the available scientific information at the time.

San Antonio product liability attorneys have found that victims of this dangerous drug have not been impressed by the company's apology.  If anything, many of them are actually outraged at the company's excuse for waiting so long to issue an apology in the first place.  According to Gruenenthal, it remained in a state of “silent shock” for all of these years, horrified at the damage done by its drug. 

That does seem very insulting to the thousands of Thalidomide victims in the US and across the world, who live without limbs and have suffered silently in shock for decades. 

If you have been injured by the use of any pharmaceutical drugs, consult an experienced San Antonio product liability attorney at Watts Guerra Craft.

Tags: Pharmaceutical Mass Torts, Product Liability, San Antonio

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