Dangerous Drug Reactions
Not only do we trust our doctors with our health, but we also place trust in the medications they prescribe. When a prescription medication results in an adverse reaction, the results can vary from a mild allergic reaction, to a painful and even lethal experience.
According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, medication errors cause at least one death per day, and affect more than 1.3 million people each year. This is proof that pharmaceuticals are hazardous when unknown allergies exist, or if warnings are not clear about side effects.
What are the Common Dangerous Drug Reactions?
Fact is, many medications are rushed to market before they have been thoroughly tested. Without adequate safety testing, these medications may cause harmful symptoms, or lead to a worse health condition. Severe and disfiguring injuries may occur, such as Stevens Johnson Syndrome, Rhabdomyolosis (liver failure), renal failure (kidney failure) and other life-threatening conditions.
Here are just a few of the ways you can experience injury from an adverse drug reaction:
- Hypersensitivity Reactions (including Stevens Johnson Syndrome and Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis)
- Birth Defects
- Tissue Damage
- Kidney Failure
- Liver Failure
Since 1976, the lawyers of Searcy Denney have devoted themselves to the aggressive representation of thousands of plaintiffs who have suffered injuries, or who have died as a result of defective products, including dangerous drugs, medical devices and other consumer goods. If you or someone you know has been a victim, and hospitalized due to a drug reaction, contact us today. Learn about legal rights and precautions to take in order to preserve evidence and protect yourself.
When to Contact an Attorney
If you have suffered from an adverse drug reaction, or experienced a worsening of your symptoms since taking the drug, you should immediately seek help. The first person to call is your doctor, and then your best option is to speak with an experienced drug reaction attorney.
Even if your reaction has been minor, you may be one of many victims of a bad reaction to a specific drug. In some cases, a dangerous drug recall could have been issued on the medication you were prescribed, and you may be entitled to compensation from the healthcare provider who prescribed it to you.
In other cases, you may be one of many patients who have reported injury from a dangerous drug, and there may be opportunity to hold the manufacturer accountable through a class action lawsuit.
By getting the information in the hands of a competent drug liability lawyer, you will have the best chance of receiving compensation for your pain and suffering.
But Who Is Liable for my Injury?
Bad drug reactions can involve one or several liable parties. To identify them, a lawyer will examine the “chain of distribution” leading from the company that produced the drug to the pharmacy where you picked it up. This chain may include:
- The manufacturer who produced the drug. Despite the vast resources at their disposal, pharmaceutical companies have been known to inadequately test their products for safety, causing dangerous drug injury to millions of patients. Why? Drugs are a multi-billion dollar, global business, and a drug on the market makes money where as one being tested does not.
- The laboratory that tested the drug. Every drug must undergo a series of safety tests before it can be marketed or sold. If these tests failed to catch a defect in the drug, they share in the responsibility for your bad drug reaction.
- The sales representative who sold the drug to healthcare providers. Many drug companies employ sales professionals to market their product to doctors and hospitals. Sales professionals are often compensated based on the amount of drugs they can sell to the doctor or medical facility. In some cases, drugs have been marketed as “off-label,” meaning they have been used for alternative uses other than for which they had been developed.
- The doctor, hospital or clinic who prescribed the drug to you. You trust your healthcare provider to perform due diligence on medications before writing your prescription. If your physician failed to warn you about possible side effects, or did not adequately advise you on how to take the drug, they may be liable for your injury. All prescription drugs include a package insert with further details and warnings, and it is encouraged to review the insert prior to taking the prescription.
- The pharmacy who sold you the drug. The pharmacy is often the final point in the chain of distribution, and they bear the final responsibility to advise you about using the drug. Failure to provide you with adequate counsel about use of the drug may constitute liability on the pharmacist’s part.
If You Need Help, Here is What to Do:
Unfortunately, there are repeated patterns of injuries stemming from defective pharmaceutical products and improper prescriptions. Our attorneys have decades of experience, because we continue to see injuries from dangerous drug reactions. If you or a loved one has suffered due to a bad drug reaction, contact our drug attorneys at Searcy Denney today by calling 800-388-3905 today.