Brinkley v. Pliva, Inc., a defective drugs case from the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, involved plaintiff whose doctor prescribed the brand-name drug Reglan to treat her Gastro Esophageal Reflux Disease (GERD). Plaintiff’s pharmacist substituted the generic drug metoclopramide, which was manufactured by defendant. This occurred in 2002.
Pursuant to Federal Food Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FDCA), manufacturers of generic medications are required to prove their drugs are the same as the brand-name equivalent in design and labeling. Generic drug makers are not permitted to add any additional warnings.
In 2004, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the Reglan maker’s request to add two additional bold statements to the labeling warning the product should not be taken for more than 12 weeks. Defendant did not add these additional warnings to its generic product.