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When Do I Have a Defective Drug Lawsuit?

From massive class action lawsuits to individual injury claims, many people choose to take legal action against pharmaceutical companies when they’ve suffered from defective drug injuries. But for the average person, it can be daunting to consider bringing a legal claim against a massive corporation – and you may not even know when you have a case.

As product liability attorneys, our team at Dean Law Firm can review your case for free, and help you determine whether you have grounds for a defective product lawsuit of any kind. We understand that the injuries sustained from a dangerous medication can be catastrophic, and we’re committed to helping you seek justice for those injuries.

In this post, we’ll discuss the basic elements of a defective drug lawsuit – and discuss how you can take action.

What Does It Mean to Have a “Defective Drug”?

From cancer-causing contaminants to life-threatening side effects, there are many possible ways that a drug could become classified as “defective." Because we put our trust in medical professionals and drug companies to exercise a high degree of caution, there is a clearly established “duty of care” that manufacturers have towards patients. When they fail to disclose faults in the production process or falsely advertise their product to vulnerable audiences, pharmaceutical companies can be held accountable under product liability laws.

Here are a few of the most common flaws that can cause you to sustain injuries:

  • Inappropriate or inadequate instructions for use. Often called a “failure to warn” lawsuit, this is one of the most common reasons that people file defective drug lawsuits. Although drug makers are required to provide a comprehensive guide for usage, they may purposely leave out key details to increase sales – leading to serious injuries for those that take the medications.
  • False advertising. Dozens of federal laws govern how medical institutions can promote and sell their products, in order to avoid misleading the public. In spite of these regulations, some unethical pharmaceutical companies will downplay the risks and side effects of their products, and use marketing campaigns to suggest that a drug is safe.
  • Inherent design flaws. Some drugs are designed in such a way that the side effects far outweigh the benefits, especially for vulnerable or at-risk populations. In the case of common anticoagulant Xarelto, thousands of consumers came forward to pursue legal action after learning that there was a risk of “reverse bleeding” in patients – but no antidote to this potentially fatal problem.
  • Manufacturing defects. In one recent case, the FDA discovered unacceptable levels of a probable human carcinogen called NDMA lurking in thousands of generic valsartan batches. Because valsartan is a compound included in most of America’s blood pressure medications, many patients have been put at risk. Because this contamination was traced back to the manufacturing process, this medication would be considered to have manufacturing defects, rather than intrinsic design flaws.

How Do I Know My Medication Is Defective?

Because the defects can vary so widely, and the symptoms may be diverse, it’s particularly difficult to know when you’ve been taking a dangerous or faulty medication. Oftentimes, you may be able to join an existing class action lawsuit, as the defects usually affect many people at once. In other instances, you may just suspect that a defective drug was behind your return to a hospital or doctor’s office, but feel unsure about how to proceed.

No matter what your situation, it’s best to contact a skilled attorney if you believe a defective drug has caused you to sustain injuries. Because we know exactly what medications are in open litigation, and because we work with expert medical professionals on a regular basis, our team can confirm the details of your case in a free evaluation.

Call the Dean Law Firm today at (432) 214-8125 to get started!