In 2008 Bayer agreed to run a $20 million advertising campaign for its Yaz birth control pill. The purpose of the new ads is to correct some misrepresentations that were in the initial advertising campaign where Bayer downplayed the risks of Yaz and overstated the drugs benefits. The agreement to run the corrective ads followed a warning letter that Bayer received from the FDA about the original Yaz ads.
Now Bayer is facing federal lawsuits about the safety of Yaz and Yasmin birth control pills. According to plaintiffs’ lawyers Bayer overpromoted the birth control pills, while failing to warn of their increased risks of injury such as blood clots. Plaintiffs’ attorneys believe that the FDA’s warning letter is important evidence of their clients’ claims. One attorney stated that her firm has uncovered evidence that the FDA has received many more reports of adverse events for Yaz and Yasmin than for other birth contol pills that have been on the market longer. Yasmin was approved by the FDA in 2001 and Yaz in 2006. Many more lawsuits against Bayer are expected to be filed in the coming weeks and months.