Just because a doctor prescribes a medication or medical device doesn’t always mean it is safe or without risks. Some pharmaceutical medications or devices are dangerous and can cause serious or fatal injuries. If you were injured or a loved one has died due to a pharmaceutical medication or medical device, contact our experienced Des Moines drug injury lawyer to protect your legal rights and to determine what steps to take to get the compensation you deserve for your injury or loss.
What Are Drug Injuries?
Drug injuries occur when a person dies or is injured after taking prescription medication or using a medical device. The death or injury must be directly related to a reaction to using a pharmaceutical drug or specific medical device to be cause for a lawsuit since the death or injury would not have occurred without taking the medication or using the device.
Since it is the responsibility of a doctor or pharmaceutical company to advise patients about the possible effects of a medication or device being prescribed, when this does not happen, the outcome can be devastating. Not being provided information about a drug or device prior to its use does not permit patients to make a fully-informed decision based on the knowledge they are given, and they are not able to decide if another option would suit them better.
Drug injuries can vary in type and severity depending on the specific pharmaceutical drug or medical device but can include the following:
- Heart problems
- High blood pressure
- Damage to organs
- Neurological defects
- Certain types of cancer
- Skin condition
- Internal bleeding
What’s the Difference Between Drug Side Effects and Drug Injuries?
Pharmaceutical medications and medical devices come with certain risks and side effects. These are often clearly stated on the medication’s packaging or in the medication’s advertising. A doctor may also advise a patient of a medication's risks and potential side effects so that they can make an educated decision about taking it. Side effects can range from mild to severe. Some side effects can be life-threatening.
When a doctor or patient is not made aware of certain risks or side effects of a medication, a drug injury can occur since there was no clear warning. Drug injuries can cause serious, life-altering injuries or result in death. It is the responsibility of the pharmaceutical company to clearly state the risks and side effects of a drug so that the patient can decide if it is the best option for them.
The most significant difference between a side effect and drug injury is whether the pharmaceutical company made the potential risks known to the prescribing doctor or patient. Unlike a drug injury, side effects are publicized to the public and not hidden. If you took medication or used a medical device and suffered a severe reaction that you were not warned about prior to using it, this is considered a drug injury.
Who Can I Sue for Drug Injuries?
If you suffered a drug injury, there are various parties that could be held responsible by a skilled and experienced drug injury lawyer in Des Moines. Depending on the cause of the injury, possible parties that could be defendants in a drug injury lawsuit may include:
- Manufacturing defect. Pharmaceutical medications must be manufactured according to their specific design. A deviation from the medication’s design, such as contamination or mislabeling, can cause the drug to be unsafe and lead to a drug injury. If this is the case, the company responsible for making the product can be held liable.
- Marketing defect. If a drug injury resulted from untruthattful, incomplete, or misleading advertising or labeling, the prescription drug company might be held responsible since they did not adequately warn doctors or patients of the potential drug risks.
- Design defect. Pharmaceutical companies could be held responsible for a drug injury due to a design defect if they did not take the proper care to study the medication and design it in a way that is reasonably safe.
Filing a Class Action Lawsuit With the Help of a Des Moines Drug Injury Lawyer
When a group of people has suffered similar drug injuries, they may join together in a class action lawsuit against the company that manufactured the pharmaceutical drug or medical device. Hiring a drug injury lawyer in Des Moines can determine if you qualify for a class action claim and what to do to best protect your rights and potential recovery.
A class action lawsuit allows people to combine financial resources and work as a group to pursue damages. This can be a more affordable option since legal fees can be costly when fighting a big company. Filing a claim as a group can split the cost among the group’s members, so the financial burden is not on one person. If the case settles and a recovery is obtained, the settlement amount is divided among the people who are named in the class action claim.
Drug Injury Statute of limitations in Des Moines
If you have been injured due to a negligently designed medication or medical device, don’t wait to take action. Each state has a statute of limitations to file a drug injury lawsuit. In Des Moines, the statute of limitations is two years from the date that the injury occurred. To bring forth a lawsuit, you must file your claim before the time expires, or you will no longer have the right to pursue a legal recovery.
There are certain exceptions to the two-year statute of limitations, such as:
- The injury was not reasonably discovered on a specific date, or the injury was not apparent immediately. You may not have exhibited signs of the drug injury immediately, and if this is the case, the two-year deadline will begin when you realize you were hurt.
- If a minor under the age of 18 suffered a drug injury and the parent or legal guardian failed to file a claim on their behalf, they will have two years from the date of the injury or until they turn 19 to pursue legal action.
How to Select the Right Drug Injury Lawyer in Des Moines
Don’t rely on the pharmaceutical company to handle your case. They are not concerned with your best interests and may pressure you to settle your claim quickly and for less than you deserve. Hiring a Des Moines drug injury lawyer can protect your legal rights and ensure you recover the damages you are legally entitled to.
Who you choose as a lawyer to represent your drug injury case can affect the overall outcome of your claim. When selecting a Des Moines drug injury lawyer, you will want to look for an experienced lawyer who is willing to fight for your rights and take your case to court if needed. You can begin your search for an injury attorney online since most law firms have websites containing helpful information. Some information you may find useful in making a decision on what drug injury lawyer to select to represent your case may include:
- Case results can show examples of what types of settlements other drug injury clients have awarded for their cases. Make sure to ask potential attorneys about their experience with these types of cases.
- Testimonials from past clients give insight into the level of satisfaction other clients have with the lawyer for their case.
- Awards and accolades show how the community regards a lawyer and can give examples of different types of recognition they have received.
Another way to find a lawyer for your case is to ask friends and family members for referrals to lawyers they may have used in the past or consider using an attorney you may know personally. You will want to make sure that the lawyer you choose has experience with drug injury cases. Once you narrow down your choices, meet with each lawyer individually and ask plenty of questions. Your gut feeling and how the lawyer answers your questions can help you select the best Des Moines drug injury lawyer for your case.
Contact Hupy and Abraham's Des Moines Drug Injury Attorney
If you need a Des Moines drug injury attorney, contact Hupy & Abraham for a free, no-obligation consultation. Our experienced team has a successful track record of getting our clients the fair recovery they deserve. To schedule an appointment, contact us online or call us at 1-800-800-5678.