Much like the medical devices we discussed last week, prescription drugs have also resulted in patient deaths or injuries. Victims of dangerous prescription drugs have sought justice by filing lawsuits.
When discussing prescription drug lawsuits, Accutane is one of the most widely known examples. Accutane was FDA approved in 1982, and sold by Hoffmann-La Roche as a drug used to treat severe acne. Several years after enjoying success, the drug came under scrutiny for increasing the risk of fetal deformities.
Accutane’s unfavorable place in the public spotlight was far from over, and the drug became extremely controversial in the late 1990s for causing adverse psychiatric effects and irritable bowel syndrome. The FDA investigated hundreds of cases involving suicide, psychosis, major psychiatric problems and ulcerative colitis linked to Accutane. By 2009, Hoffman-La Roche pulled the drug from the market as the cost of lawsuits became greater than profits.
Why did Hoffman-La Roche face multiple lawsuits for Accutane? One man developed a case of ulcerative colitis so severe, he was forced to have his colon removed. Several other victims of Accutane came forward, claiming the drug had given them ulcerative colitis. These people used Accutane to treat acne, not to destroy their internal organs or to become so depressed that suicide seemed like a reasonable decision.
Why Prescription Drug Lawsuits Are Necessary
People use medications to treat health conditions, not to destroy their lives. While Accutane is the most widely discussed prescription drug lawsuit among personal injury attorneys, there are other examples.
Most recently, the antipsychotic drug Risperdal has been linked with male gynecomastia (development of male breasts). This can be emotionally and physically damaging to young males, who may need to undergo breast removal.
When people take prescription medications and are betrayed by deadly or damaging side effects, drug makers need to be held accountable.
The Lafayette personal injury attorneys at Galloway Jefcoat can defend people who have been harmed by negligent drug manufacturers.