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When can I file a pharmaceutical drug complaint?

Posted in Products Liability on Tuesday, February 20, 2018.

There are numerous drugs on the market that can cause serious injuries and even death to the patients who take them. Nevertheless, doctors continue to prescribe these drugs for patients when they believe that the potential health benefits outweigh the possible risks.

It’s vital for doctors to explain all of the risks associated with the drugs they prescribe to their patients. It’s also important for them to use sound judgment when prescribing these potentially dangerous medications to ensure that the risks are indeed warranted. When a doctor fails to do these things and a patient gets hurt or killed because of a dangerous drug, that doctor could be financially liable for the patient’s injuries and other damages. In addition, the drug’s manufacturer could also have some liability if the medicine is defective or otherwise harmful.

When can plaintiffs file pharmaceutical drug complaints?

There are various circumstances in which plaintiffs can file a claim for damages relating to a pharmaceutical drug that they were legally prescribed. These situations arise when a patient dies or suffers a catastrophic injury as a result of being wrongfully prescribed a medication or if the drug was somehow defective.

Let’s take a look at a few hypothetical situations in which dangerous drug lawsuits could arise.

  • A doctor prescribes a patient a particular medication even though the doctor knew or should have known that the medication poses a serious risk for the patient. For example, maybe the medication causes elevated blood pressure or the risk of stroke, and the patient already had high blood pressure or was at risk for a stroke.
  • A pharmaceutical drug injures numerous patients by causing them to suffer serious health complications or causes birth defects in babies born to pregnant mothers, e.g., thalidomide. In this case, both the doctor and the pharmaceutical company could be liable.
  • A hospital gives a patient the wrong medication in error, causing serious health complications.

Who is at fault for your worsened medical condition?

Sometimes an otherwise perfectly healthy person begins taking a medication and suddenly suffers a heart attack, stroke or some other health problem that’s completely out of the norm. When something like this happens, patients and their families should question the situation and look into whether the new and potentially dangerous drug could be the cause. If that is the case, the prescribing physician and the pharmaceutical company that makes and markets it could potentially be liable for the resulting damages and injuries.