… Justice Thomas wrote, that makers of generic drugs are caught in an impossible bind: they can comply with a state law requiring them to change their labels or the federal law prohibiting changes, but not both.
Given that impossibility, federal law pre-empts state law under the Constitution’s supremacy clause, he wrote.
In dissent, Justice Sonia Sotomayor said the majority opinion invented “new principles of pre-emption law out of the air” and will lead to “absurd consequences.”
“As the majority itself admits,” Justice Sotomayor wrote, “a drug consumer’s right to compensation for inadequate warnings now turns on the happenstance of whether her pharmacist filled her prescription with a brand-name drug or a generic.”
The decision considered three consolidated cases brought by women who took generic metoclopramide, which is sold under the brand name Reglan. They took the drug for stomach ailments and developed a serious neurological disorder. Appeals courts ruled against the drug makers, saying that the federal regulatory regime did not block claims under state law.
The Supreme Court reversed those decisions on Thursday, rejecting what Justice Thomas called the “fair argument,” that the defendants should have at least tried to persuade the federal drug agency to let them use a safer label. …
Do not take the drug metoclopramide for stomach acid (GERD) no matter what name it goes by.
Taking metoclopramide may cause you to develop a muscle problem called tardive dyskinesia. If you develop tardive dyskinesia, you will move your muscles, especially the muscles in your face in unusual ways. You will not be able to control or stop these movements. Tardive dyskinesia may not go away even after you stop taking metoclopramide. The longer you take metoclopramide, the greater the risk that you will develop tardive dyskinesia. Therefore, your doctor will probably tell you not to take metoclopramide for longer than 12 weeks. The risk that you will develop tardive dyskinesia is also greater if you are taking medications for mental illness, if you have diabetes, or if you are elderly, especially if you are a woman. Call your doctor immediately if you develop any uncontrollable body movements, especially lip smacking, mouth puckering, chewing, frowning, scowling, sticking out your tongue, blinking, eye movements, or shaking arms or legs.