What Is Pharmaceutical Litigation?

Pharmaceutical drugs have revolutionized medicine and can have life-changing benefits for patients. However, when a pharmaceutical company releases a dangerous or defective drug to the market or allows it to remain commercialized even after known safety hazards are revealed, consumers can be put at tremendous risk. If you have been injured by what you believe to be a dangerous or defective drug, you may have legal grounds to initiate a pharmaceutical litigation against the company that made it.

Filing a Personal Injury Case Against a Pharmaceutical Company

When you are prescribed a drug by your doctor and you use it as directed, you place your trust in the medication to make you better. When you use a drug as intended and subsequently suffer injuries as a result of that medication, your trust is betrayed and you could have a case for compensation against the pharmaceutical company. Other parties besides the pharmaceutical company could be responsible for your injuries caused by a dangerous or defective drug. These could include:

  • The company that marketed the drug
  • The company that distributed the drug
  • The company that manufactured the drug
  • The laboratory or medical facility where the drug was tested or developed
  • The sales representatives who helped facilitate the drug’s commercialization

Sometimes, the physician or healthcare provider who prescribed the medication could also be deemed legally responsible for your injuries in a pharmaceutical lawsuit.

The most common circumstances in which an injured person may file a pharmaceutical lawsuit because a drug is dangerous or defective are when:

  1. The drug contained design defects
  2. The drug was manufactured defectively
  3. The drug did not have proper warnings informing users of risks and ensuring proper usage

In these cases, the pharmaceutical company could be held strictly liable for your injuries, regardless of whether or not its actions constituted negligence.

Other possible grounds to initiate pharmaceutical litigation for a drug-related injury could include situations where the drug was not sufficiently tested or the testing process itself:

  • Was flawed
  • Underwent poor quality control
  • Had an inherently dangerous formulation
  • Caused unreasonably hazardous side effects

Dangerous or defective drugs can span a wide range of medication types, including opioids, sedatives, antidepressants, over-the-counter medications, painkillers, and even birth control.

Common Injuries and Damages in Pharmaceutical Litigation

The injuries cited in pharmaceutical lawsuits can range from severe to deadly. These can include strokes, heart attacks, internal bleeding, birth defects, and various cancers. Other injuries like heart failure, blood clots, damage to the organs, gastrointestinal complications, neuropathy, and internal bleeding are also frequently reported from dangerous or defective drugs.

Recovering compensation through pharmaceutical litigation is not as simple as showing that you were injured by a drug. You have to prove that the drug was dangerous or defective in some way, that it was in this dangerous or defective state when it was commercialized, and that this drug was the direct cause of your injuries and damages.

In other words, achieving justice in a pharmaceutical litigation requires extensive, detailed evidence and representation from an experienced legal team familiar with these kinds of cases. It can be helpful to have an experienced attorney at your side to consult with important witnesses like medical experts who can speak to the extent of your injuries as well as the cost of those losses and collect a range of medical evidence to bolster your claim. Forms of recoverable compensation in a successful pharmaceutical lawsuit can include the value of your past and future lost wages, medical bills, pain and suffering, lost life enjoyment, and more.