All of us require specialized experience in our occupations, whether we are teachers, parents, police officers, or stockbrokers. Medical doctors require a certain level of expertise since people entrust their lives with physicians on a daily basis. Given their training and experience, it is not wrong for us, as patients, to trust our doctors. However, even a careful, diligent doctor may prescribe something to a patient that leads to an adverse, even deadly, reaction. The Food and Drug Administration is responsible for monitoring adverse reactions and issuing a drug recall when necessary. Apart from that, there are “safe” drugs on the market that have serious impairment or death as listed side effects, and these require monitoring from physicians alone.
All medications have possible side effects, some more serious than others. We all remember when Accutane first came on the market, as well as the slough of lawsuits surrounding severe depression and gastrointestinal complications that resulted in some patients as a result of taking this drug. Widely prescribed antidepressant medications and even Lipitor, one of the most prescribed drugs in the country, are examples of drugs that can lead to death.
The question becomes: who is at fault here? Should burden be placed on the pharmaceutical companies for making these drugs available at all? Balance the possibility of death with the millions of people these drugs help per year, and the answer is a grey area in ethics. Regardless of your personal take on the matter, the end result is that these drugs are being prescribed to people who end up having adverse reactions and losing their lives or suffering long-term disability or injury. Some blame is distributed, depending on the circumstances, between the companies, the prescribing doctor, the pharmacist (if a dosage error was made), and even on the patient if they did not report changes in behavior or feeling once they started taking the medication.
Tips for Staying Safe
There are great risks associated with taking even seemingly harmless medications, such as often-prescribed antibiotics. Despite this, millions of people rely on medications for mental and physical stability, improvement of health, breathing, and specialized conditions that require constant treatment. It is not wrong to trust your physician, but always be on the lookout for any sudden changes in your behavior, temperament, mood, breathing, or other physical wellness when taking any medication. Seemingly small changes can be a signal of something more serious; it is always worth it to mention these changes to your prescribing doctor. Further, make sure you are always aware of the names and dosages of all of the medications you are already taking; many injuries and deaths associated with prescription drugs involve dosage errors or failure to report certain medications.
South Carolina Prescription Drug Lawyers
At Solomon Law Group, our experienced team of pharmaceutical drug attorneys are familiar with the complex laws that govern the distribution of prescription drugs in the United States. We know how to advocate on behalf of our clients, while working with pharmaceutical companies, insurance companies, doctors, and third parties to ensure you receive compensation for your losses. If you or anyone you know has been injured or died as a result of taking prescription medication, contact our Columbia, South Carolina law office to learn more about your legal rights today.