Indianapolis Law Firms Handling Defective Drug Claims
Both prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) drugs, including OTC children’s medications, can be defective causing serious injuries or having fatal side effects. Defective drug lawsuits are product liability suits against the pharmaceutical companies that make the dangerous medications.
Some defective drugs are recalled, but most are not. If the drug which caused your injuries was recalled, that can certainly help your case, but you can still recover compensation for injuries caused by defective drugs which have not been recalled.
Even when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is aware of and acknowledges the dangers of a medication, it will usually allow the drug to stay on the market, often with label updates to warn doctors and consumers of the dangers. Sometimes this is because there is a segment of the population who can benefit from the drug.
Failure to Warn
The majority of defective drug cases fall under failure to warn, because drug companies have a legal duty to warn doctors and consumers of the dangerous side effects that their products can cause.
It is not unusual to discover that the pharmaceutical company was aware of the danger and hid it from the FDA in order to gain approval.
The FDA approves medications for specific purposes. An off-label use is anything other than what the drug was approved for. Doctors are allowed to use their best judgment and prescribe drug off-label when they think a patient will benefit. Off-label marketing, however, is against the law whether it is marketing to healthcare professionals or direct-to-consumer marketing.
Packaging and Labeling Defects Leading to Improper Administration
Certain types of packaging and labeling defects can lead to administration of the wrong dose or the wrong drug. Labeling with dosing information that is confusing or difficult to read, multiple-dose vials which are not easily distinguished from single-dose vials, and drugs with similar names in packaging that looks too similar are all defects which can lead to these types of errors.
Contaminate drugs can cause serious injuries and death, usually due to severe infections. Recalls are common for contaminated medications, because the drug itself is not in question, just the contaminated batch.
Unfortunately, the contamination may not be discovered and a recall issued until after it has injured or killed many people. These recalls are often expanded over a long period of time as problems with more batches or products are discovered.