Jim Gottstein’s story of recovery (do follow this link it is a testimony of just how wonderful this man is) is the catalyst of the Zyprexa scandal. This is a man who knows the dangers of medications and knows that they are often pushed unecessarily upon unsuspecting individuals. He was told he would never again live a productive life by the psychiatrists who first treated him. Not so. He recovered and went on to be a successful attorney fighting for the rights of those with mental illness. Philip Dawdy here in the first of his Zyprexa series says of Gottstein:
The documents that the Times got its hands on were made available to the paper by Jim Gottstein, an attorney in Alaska. The documents were available as a result of discovery proceedings in a class-action lawsuit alleging diabetes and other injuries (including deaths) connected with the use of Zyprexa. The case was settled last year for either $690 million or $750 million, depending on whose account you trust. The settlement forced Eli Lilly to take a loss for one quarter in 2005. The monies have not yet been distributed to plaintiffs and Eli Lilly’s internal documents were unavailable to the public because a judge had ordered them sealed.
Gottstein was peripherally connected to the case and, in connection with another case he was working on, he got ahold of the documents. Since he was not a party to the class action suit, he was not bound by the court’s seal. I know Gottstein a little bit and am confident in saying he felt morally compelled to ensure that the public knew about the company’s behavior. He is owed many thanks.
Gottstein is now in big legal trouble. He is requesting donations for his legal defense.
Okay, now for what I believe is the first place all of the Zyprexa Chronicles are compiled, in their entirety up to todays date, in chronological order- see below: (it is possible that this is not a perfect list as the task was cumbersome and I’m not particularly detail oriented. I did my best.) I am doing this because I believe the collection is revealing of not just Ely Lilly’s practices but of the pharmaceutical industry practices in general. They also call to attention the pathetic response by the mainstream media, as well as problems with the legal system.
Also, it must be added that all atypical antipsychotics have similar side-effect profiles to that of Zyprexa–specifically the problems of weight gain and the possible development of diabetes. I have been on atypicals for 15 years, gained approximately 80 lbs and lost much of my cognitive abilities as a result of their use. It is because of my diminished cognitive functioning that I, for at least the forseeable future, will not be doing investigative reporting of any significance and did not feel capable of summarizing the whole story. I also think that this collection can be of use to anyone who wants to know the whole story. Philip Dawdy accomplished more than the entire blogosphere and blew away anything in traditional media coverage on this issue.