Attorneys for Defective Drug Lawsuits
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The national law firm of Parker Waichman LLP has long and successfully fought for its clients over problems involving defective drugs and injuries associated with these drugs. Defective drug issues relate to recalled drugs, drugs that were not adequately tested for all of their potential side effects, manufacturing errors, dosage mistakes, inadequate warnings and mislabeling. This issues may arise with prescription drugs or over-the-counter (OTC) drugs.
Pharmaceutical companies manufacture and market hundreds of new drugs annually. Each drug is regulated and approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) before it reaches the consumer. Even with this regulatory oversight, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) pharmaceutical drugs kill over 40,000 people every year.
In 2011, it was reported that prescription drug deaths outnumbered traffic fatalities in the U.S. Also, recent studies noted by the CDC estimate that more than 50 percent of the drugs marketed to the American consumer have damaging effects, despite testing and FDA regulation.
Parker Waichman is renowned in the industry as experts in defective drug litigation. Our attorneys are well versed in all areas involved in this type of litigation and have a long track record of great success on behalf of our clients.
Drug Manufacturing, Pharmacist, Physician Responsibility
Prior to submitting a drug for approval by the FDA, drug manufacturers must ensure proper clinical testing is conducted. Drug makers must also include any potential adverse reactions and warnings on the drug label so that patients, their caretakers, and their physicians are appropriately aware of all the risks tied to the medication.
Pharmacists are responsible to issue the correct, precise drug dosage. Physicians must ensure they prescribe the most appropriate medication, ensuring to consider the risks and benefits of a prescribed medication, especially given that some drugs have significant, serious, and/or long-term side effects.
When a medication is found to be potentially dangerous, the FDA must investigate that potential to determine if the drug’s intended benefits outweigh its risks. If risks are greater, a medication may be recalled. Sometimes, the agency may mandate additional warnings be added to a drug’s labeling.
According to the FDA, “Recalls are actions taken by a firm to remove a product from the market. Recalls may be conducted on a firm’s own initiative, by FDA request, or by FDA order under statutory authority.”
Sometimes the recall will remove a drug from the market. At other times the recall will require additional warnings be written on the labeling information.
Dangerous drugs typically cause the most harm within the first 12 months of their release. This means that many products are released without a full understanding of their risks. This also means that initial patients taking the new drug often suffer injury.
Some drugs are still marketed by drug companies despite evidence of serious side effects or death. Legally, drug manufacturers are strictly liable for injuries if the drug they sell is defective or unreasonably dangerous.
This can happen due to manufacturer error, by consumers not being warned of potential adverse effects due to use of the defective drug, or because the drug has a design flaw that makes the medication dangerous.
The defective drug attorneys at Parker Waichman know that, in each of these situations, the manufacturer is liable and may be sued for damages regardless of if the manufacturer was not aware of the danger, no matter how carefully the defective was produced or labeled.
Promoting Off-Label Uses
Pharmaceutical companies often market their drugs for off-label uses. This means that, although the FDA may have examined the clinical results and approved the drug for a specific use, the drug company may have discovered that the drug may be effective for other conditions and has promoted the drug for those other, unapproved conditions.
This practice of touting drugs for off-label uses is dangerous and illegal, and may be accomplished through back channels using monetary incentives paid to physicians who will prescribe the drugs for those additional, unapproved uses. Although physicians may prescribe medications for off-label uses, drug marketers are banned from this practice.
Drug Injuries and Legal Claims
Product liability laws hold manufacturers, wholesalers, and distributors responsible for developing and dispensing drugs that are found to be defective. A drug may be defective because of design flaws, manufacturing defects and insufficient labels and warnings.
Should a drug allegedly lead to injuries or deaths, a legal claim may be made for financial compensation, pain and suffering, loss of economic support, loss of the deceased person’s companionship, and loss of wages and future wages.
FDA Approval Does Not Guarantee a Drug is Safe
Consumers often incorrectly believe that when a drug receives FDA approval, the drug is safe for everyone’s use. Yet, very few medications are safe for all patients. Whether a manufacturer has pressured the FDA for approval, omitted pertinent information, or neglected to include safety warnings, that drug maker should be held accountable for any harm caused.
Approval from the FDA is needed for a drug to be marketed commercially; however, even following approval, the FDA monitors drugs through reports from drug manufacturers and the FDA’s MedWatch program to determine if the drug should be classified as a defective drug.
The pharmaceutical industry’s job is to create and sell drugs; defective drug attorneys are responsible to protect consumers injured by defective drugs. Defective drug attorneys routinely represent individuals who have been injured and/or experienced moderate to severe trauma due to a defective drug.
The defective drug attorneys at Parker Waichman also keep abreast of the effects drugs are having on patients and are available to provide support to those who have been harmed.
Questions Concerning Defective Drugs
The attorneys Parker Waichman LLP have a long history of successfully fighting defective drug cases for their clients. If you or someone you know has been injured due to a defective drug, the firm offers legal about filing a lawsuit.