In 2019, the Food and Drug Administration received over 2.1 million reports of adverse reactions to drugs and therapeutic products. These resulted in 173,875 deaths and more than 1.1 million serious medical events, such as hospitalization, disabilities, and congenital anomalies.
When you are given medication, you expect it to help you, not hurt you. Unfortunately, not every drug on the market is safe. There are drugs people regularly take that can lead to debilitating side effects. Some people end up developing medical conditions or incurable diseases like cancer.
When something like that happens, it’s traumatic and devastating for the victim and their family. You shouldn’t suffer through this alone. The North Carolina dangerous drug lawyers from DeMayo Law Offices are ready to help you pursue an insurance claim or lawsuit to compensate you for your losses.
We know you’re under a great deal of stress and have to deal with financial, emotional, and physical strain. You’re probably in pain, out of work, and don’t have the money to pay for your medical treatment. We have the experience and knowledge to handle dangerous drug claims and ensure our clients win the monetary award they need to cover their damages.
If you or a loved one have suffered emotionally or physically after using a dangerous drug, there is hope. The injury attorneys at DeMayo Law Offices have handled a number of dangerous drug cases. We can help you hold the drug manufacturers liable and help you recover the compensation you deserve. We’ll be by your side throughout your entire case and make ourselves available when you need us.
Our legal team will provide dependable services and will always make you a priority. To schedule your free consultation with a NC dangerous drug attorney so you can discuss your case with us, call (877) 333-1000 today.
How Dangerous Drugs Are Created
Our clients have a lot of questions about dangerous drugs, most commonly, “How does the FDA let this happen?”
Just because a drug has FDA approval doesn’t mean it’s 100 percent safe. When a drug is first developed, it goes through testing to make sure it doesn’t have dangerous side effects. That said, drugs are approved all the time if the dangerous side effects don’t occur very often.
This lack of strict regulation contributes to people being harmed by defective drugs. Even when the FDA finds that a drug is causing serious side effects, they may not remove it from the market. In some cases, the FDA issued recall merely requires additional warnings to appear on the drug’s packaging.
Some of the ways dangerous drugs end up getting approved include:
- Ignorance of long-term side effects. Many drugs are not tested long enough to find the long-term problems. In this scenario, both the manufacturer and the FDA may think a drug is safe, only to find out years later it isn’t.
- The 501(K) Clearance. This is a special FDA process that approves a new product with little testing as long as there is a similar product already on the market. This is a dangerous loophole, especially if the current product is also dangerous.
- The FDA’s lack of power. Despite the fact that the FDA is responsible for monitoring and approving medication, their reach doesn’t extend over every drug maker. One example would be compounding pharmacies who are licensed to mix and mass produce a variety of drugs that are not required to be approved by the FDA.
- Off-label use. In some cases, a drug that treats one thing can treat other problems as well. Though it may seem effective for more than one issue, it’s only tested for its original use. In a practice called off-label use, a pharmaceutical sales rep may encourage doctors to prescribe the drug for a purpose it wasn’t intended or tested for.
- Failure to disclose side effects. More than half the time, sales reps fail to disclose all of the drug’s side effects. Unfortunately, many doctors take the sales rep’s word and prescribe medication that could seriously hurt or kill their patients.
Examples of Dangerous Drugs
Big Pharma has one goal: to make as much money as possible. They will do whatever they can to achieve this with little regard to the general public’s safety. As a result, the drug market has been flooded with dangerous and defective products that can cause serious injury and death. Some of the drugs recently found to have potentially dangerous side effects include:
Psychiatric and Anti-Depression Medication
Other Dangerous Drugs
Side Effects of Dangerous Drugs
Taking a dangerous drug can be extremely detrimental to the patient’s health. Not only can it worsen their current medical condition, but it can also cause other problems as well, including:
- Heart attack
- Psychological problems or dependency
- Blood clots
- Internal bleeding
- Birth defects
- Kidney failure
- Abnormal liver function
- Increased risk of cancer
- Permanent or temporary disabilities
- Cardiovascular problems
- Stevens Johnson Syndrome
Specific cancers that have been linked to dangerous drugs include:
- Breast cancer
- Stomach, intestinal, and bladder cancers
- Skin cancers
- Ovarian cancer
- Kidney cancer
- Pancreatic cancer
- Esophageal cancer
- Kidney cancer
- Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
If your doctor diagnoses you with an illness or you start experiencing any of the side effects above, you should check with your doctor to see if you should switch medications, especially if they’re listed above. Substances in some drugs stay in your body permanently and build up over time. If you continue to take it, you might increase your risk of getting sick from it.
Three main types of defects could exist in a pharmaceutical drug:
- Design Defect: The drug has a design flaw and did not undergo adequate testing, which makes the entire supply dangerous.
- Manufacturing Defect: The medication’s design is good, but the error occurred during the manufacturing process. This type of defect could damage an entire batch or a small group from specific facilities.
- Marketing Defect: The company doesn’t provide warning labels about the dangers of their drug or clear instructions about how consumers can avoid an injury.
If you or a loved one has been harmed by a defective drug, you should seek compensation from the manufacturer of the product. Drug makers have a responsibility to produce safe products. If they don’t, you can file a claim to hold them liable based on the principles of:
- Negligence: If the dangerous drug was the result of careless testing or production, the manufacturer can be held liable for their negligence.
- Strict Liability: Under strict liability, manufacturers are responsible for the adverse effects their products cause in patients.
- Breach of Warranty: A warranty is an express or implied promise that the product will live up to a certain standard. If the drugmaker did not uphold that warranty, you could pursue compensation.
Compensation for Dangerous Drug Injuries and Wrongful Death
The settlement amount for this kind of case varies based on a variety of factors, including:
- Amount of evidence
- Age of the plaintiff
- Type and severity of injuries suffered
- Cost of current and future medical bills
- Duration of necessary treatment
- Type of medical care required, such as surgery, physical therapy, and hospitalization
- Permanent disability, disfigurement, or scarring resulting from the injury
- Amount of insurance coverage available
Whether you decide to pursue an insurance claim or a lawsuit, you could potentially win compensation for the following damages:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Loss of future earnings
- Pain and suffering
- Out of pocket costs
- Prescription medicines
- Emotional distress
- Psychological trauma, such as PTSD
- Loss of household services
- Loss of companionship or consortium
In a wrongful death case, families pursuing compensation are eligible for damages their loved ones could have incurred if they survived. Medical expenses and loss of income are common in wrongful death claims. You could also collect reimbursement of funeral and burial costs.
In North Carolina, some laws dictate who’s allowed to pursue a wrongful death case. You must be the personal representative of the deceased’s estate or a surviving spouse, child of legal age, or parent.
If you choose to file a lawsuit against the at-fault party, you have to follow a strict statute of limitations. Statutes of limitations allow victims of accidents and injuries to bring a civil action against another within a specific time limit. The statute of limitations for a dangerous drug case is three years. If you want to file a wrongful death suit, you only have two years. The clock starts ticking on the date of the injury or fatality and ends once the statute passes. If you don’t sue by the time the statute runs out, you’ll lose your right to recover compensation in this matter.
Choose DeMayo Law Offices
At DeMayo Law Offices, we work on a contingency basis, meaning we don’t get paid unless we win your case. There are no upfront fees or costs for us to work on your dangerous drug claim. If we’re unable to resolve your case, you won’t have to pay us anything. We know you’re struggling with your finances because of the injury you sustained. We don’t want to add to that stress.
We also provide a free consultation to all prospective clients. You can meet with us at no risk to discuss the details surrounding your injury and the options you have to move forward.
If you or a loved one has suffered, either injury or death, due to a dangerous drug, we can help you file a claim to seek compensation. Contact us at (877) 333-1000 or schedule a free consultation online.
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