The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to hear pharmaceutical and consumer goods manufacturer Johnson & Johnson’s appeal of a judgment ruled against the company ordering it to pay $140 million after the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled that its Children’s Motrin product caused a deadly skin condition called toxic epidermal necrolysis.
Johnson & Johnson claimed that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration should be held liable because it rejected proposed warning labels for Children’s Motrin. However, the rejected warning labels were not proposed by Johnson & Johnson but by a citizens’ petition. The Massachusetts court made the ruling reasoning that the FDA may have been more likely to accept the warnings if the company had submitted them itself.
The suit was filed after several children developed the devastating skin condition and the related Stevens Johnson Syndrome, including a seven-year-old who became blind and lost 80 percent of her lung capacity and 90 percent of her skin.