With the potential billions that drug giant Bayer is expected to lose in Yaz lawsuits over the next couple of years, it seems insane that the company would be looking to expand its Yaz empire. However, that is exactly what the company is hoping to do in releasing another version of Yaz and Yasmin — this time is patch form.
For now, the Yaz patch is being delayed over blood clot concerns, but if the patch goes the same way that the pills went, it may be on the market more quickly than some experts would like. The primary source of all of the controversy surrounding Yaz and Yasmin are the pills’ serious adverse side effects, including deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, heart attacks, stroke, development of gallstones and gallbladder disease — even death. Even if the pills are redesigned into patch form, the active ingredient, drospirenone, will still be a large part of the patch’s formula.
Drospirenone is a fourth generation synthetic progestin that makes up Yaz, Yasmin, Ocella and Beyaz. Beyaz was intended to be a healthier alternative to Yaz, but the overall makeup of the pill is the same as Yaz, but with added folic acid. So far, Beyaz has been proven to be just as dangerous as every other drospirenone-based oral contraceptive. These side effects are why more than 14,000 lawsuits have been filed against Bayer with more being filed every day. In fact, so many lawsuits have been filed against Bayer over Yaz that the company has finally begun reaching settlement agreements just to try to keep the payouts as minimal as possible.
Bayer has paid out $400 million so far, and the company is still negotiating numerous other settlements with plaintiffs all over the country. It is expected that Bayer could end up paying over a billion dollars in settlement money by the time the company is finished with all of the negotiations, so it just doesn’t make sense for it to try to expand the Yaz empire at this point in time.