Every year, large numbers of lawsuits are filed in connection with injuries resulting from dangerous drugs. In a personal injury context, the term “dangerous drugs” usually refers to dangerous prescription drugs and medicines, such as Concerta and statins. The term can also include medical devices and in some cases, certain treatments that revolve around the administration of drugs.
Thus, “dangerous drugs” does not usually refer to illegal or illicit drugs, such as opium or methamphetamines. These types of drugs are generally covered by criminal statutes, and are processed under different set of legal principals.
What Are Some Examples of Dangerous Drugs?
Most drugs are considered dangerous due to the risk of injury from side effects associated with the drug. Other dangerous drug cases focus on manufacturer defects that cause injuries to the public. Some examples of drugs that may be considered dangerous to use include:
- Actiq - associated with overdoses
- Actos - associated with bladder cancer
- Paxil, Topamax, and Zoloft - associated with birth defects
- Various types of “weight loss” or “dieting” drugs
- Suprane - associated with heart problems
- Nitrostat - packaging and labeling confusion
- Humulin R (insulin) - confusion over dosage
- Invokana - associated with decreased bone density
- Xarelto - blood thinner with no antidote
- Avandia - associated with an increased risk of heart attacks
As you can see, dangerous drugs are often grouped together according to the various side effects that they might cause. Even though different drugs might be designed for different conditions, they can often cause similar side effects.
Also, some highly safe drugs and medications can become dangerous through mislabeling, improperly printed instructions, prescription errors, or through abuse by the consumer. Thus, even "safe" drugs can cause injuries through unsafe interactions.
Can I Recover Damages for Injuries Resulting From Dangerous Drugs?
Certainly- as mentioned, dangerous or unsafe drugs make up one of the largest categories of products liability lawsuits in the nation. Sometimes writing a complaint letter to a drug company isn’t enough. You may need to take legal action on behalf of yourself or a loved one, in which case you should take some steps in preparation for filing.
If you believe that you have a claim involving dangerous drugs, you should:
- Keep the unused portion of the drugs or medicines for reference
- Keep all hospital bills and receipts, in case you need records for damages in the upcoming lawsuit
- Compile any witness testimony regarding your injuries
- Create a written account of your injuries - i.e., what happened, why you took the medication, symptoms of your injuries, losses
- Keep all records of your financial losses including lost wages and pain and suffering costs
You may then present these items and information to a qualified personal injury attorney who can help you file a lawsuit. Your case may be strengthened if many other people have also suffered injuries due to the dangerous drugs; in extensive cases a class action lawsuit may be necessary
Do I Need a Lawyer?
Lawsuits involving dangerous drugs are becoming increasingly common, especially because the number of new drugs in constantly increasing each year. You may wish to contact an experienced injury lawyer in your area if you need legal advice for your claim. Your attorney can help you recover damages for your losses, and can be on hand to guide you through the whole process.