Dangerous Drugs Lawsuits
Over the course of a month, half of Americans will take at least one prescription, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Over-the-counter drugs and nutritional or dietary supplements are not even accounted for.
For managing serious illnesses or pain, drugs are known to help us heal or be able to live a better quality of life. However, anything that we put in our mouths has its potential to cause side effects. Unfortunately, there has been an alarming increase in drug usage and unexpected side effects. For those who have been impacted by dangerous drugs, you’re not alone. These careless drug makers are rightfully being challenged by lawsuits so that they can be held accountable for such an epidemic.
How Can Drugs Be Dangerous?
Most consumers assume that a drug sold by a pharmaceutical company has been thoroughly tested for safety of use and its effectiveness. The good part is that most drugs are tested, the bad part is that there are some that are not tested. Surprisingly, these other drugs that aren’t tested are just part of the reason medication can be dangerous.
Most, if not all pharmaceutical companies will market their medications they create as safe for use and serve effective ways to treat specific diseases. The most dangerous part about this is that many of them fail to fully disclose or give adequate information on the serious side effects that may arise from taking such medication. The important factor to recognize here is that the patients are the ones suffering in the end, not the company. A perfect example of marketing defects, or sometimes referred to as “failure to warn,” is from the drug Cymbalta. Cymbalta, which is used to treat depression, anxiety and pain, has caused patients bad episodes of withdrawals. The drugmaker, Eli Lilly, was forced to settle hundreds of cases from those who claimed they didn’t disclose that these withdrawal symptoms could occur.
Drug Design Defects
Drug design defects are a serious issue because it means the drug was poorly designed and led to unreasonable side effects. The side effects that can arise from these poorly designed drugs include severe injury and even death.
Drug Manufacturing Defects
Unfortunately, manufacturing defects can also occur at the manufacturing level even when the drug is designed to be safe and effective. An example of this was in 2016 when an infant was killed after taking a laxative known as Diocto Liquid. The medication was contaminated with a rare bacteria during the manufacturing process.
Why Prescription Drugs Are Often Abused
The prescription drug epidemic is affecting the U.S. at an alarming rate and it’s showing us just how dangerous drugs can be. The overdoses and addictions to drugs have been a direct result of misuse and excessive prescriptions. Drug overdose is the leading cause of accidental death in the United States, according to the American Society of Addiction Medicine. Young adults are particularly susceptible to prescription medication addiction.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse partly blames the ease of access for the cause of overdoses and addictions. “The number of prescriptions for some of these medications has increased dramatically since the early 1990s,” the institute said on its website. “Moreover, misinformation about the addictive properties of prescription drugs and the perception that prescription drugs are less harmful than illicit drugs are other possible contributors to the problem.”
These are the most commonly abused drugs for each class, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse:
- Fentanyl (Duragesic®)
- Hydrocodone (Vicodin®)
- Oxymorphone (Opana®)
- Hydromorphone (Dilaudid®)
- Meperidine (Demerol®)
- Diphenoxylate (Lomotil®)
- Pentobarbital Sodium (Nembutal®)
- Diazepam (Valium®)
- Alprazolam (Xanax®)
- Dextroamphetamine (Dexedrine®)
- Amphetamines (Adderall®)
Who Can Be Held Responsible in Class-Action Lawsuits
Any number of parties can be held responsible depending on the dangerous drug lawsuit you file.
Since manufacturers have the bulk of the responsibility for creating safe drugs for consumers, they are typically the ones held liable during lawsuits. Contamination or mishaps could result in life-altering consequences for those taking the drugs.
Medical professionals are also known to be held responsible in a dangerous drug lawsuit. They could be liable for a failure to warn if they did not provide the appropriate information to the patient of the potentially dangerous side effects.
In some cases a pharmacist may put the wrong medication or fail to inform a patient about the dangerous interactions with other drugs that the patient might be on. In the past, patients who abused prescription drugs were also able to file claims against pharmacists who dispensed the drugs.
Because the cases often include thousands of plaintiffs, courts will often consolidate them into class-action lawsuits. This makes it easier to try cases and come to terms on a settlement.
Current Class-Action Lawsuits Against Drug Makers
Many of the class-action lawsuits are currently pending in court or are being pursued by lawyers around the country.
Here is a partial list of dangerous drugs that have been or are involved in lawsuits:
- Stevens-Johnson Syndrome Lawsuit
- Truvada with TDF
- Uloric Recall
Please seek the advice of a medical professional before making health care decisions.
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