Cologne The Cologne Administrative Court on Tuesday dismissed four complaints from thalidomide victims who had been diagnosed with vascular lesions. In particular, the complainants spoke of missing and crooked arteries.
Scientists in a thalidomide study in Heidelberg in 2013 had the suspicion that Contergan may also have caused atypical changes in the vascular and nerve pathways of thalidomide victims.
However, the court argued that there is currently no sufficient scientific evidence. An application for admission to the appeal may be lodged against the judgments, which would then be judged by the Higher Administrative Court of Münster.
In 1957, the Rhenish company Grünenthal put Contergan sleeping pills on the market. Many pregnant women took it, also because it helped to fight against morning sickness. But soon, about 10,000 children worldwide are born with severe malformations, especially to the arms and legs. In Germany alone, there were about 5,000. In 1961, Grünenthal withdrew the drug.
After long discussions, a foundation was created in 1971 with 200 million marks. Half of the money came from Grünenthal and the other half from the federal government. However, since 1997, these funds have been used, with financial benefits, especially for pensions from tax revenues.