Opioid abuse kills more than 33,000 American men and women each year. At this point, there is no point to deny that opioid addiction in the U.S. has reached epidemic proportions, and it’s time to take action to save our fellow Americans from dangerous opioid drugs.
As the U.S. government is trying to confront the opioid crisis through legislation and strict regulations, people who have been injured by opioid drugs or who lost their family members due to opioid overdose are suing pharmaceutical companies that produce, sell, distribute, and market opioid medications.
Our Philadelphia opioid-related medical malpractice attorney at The Weitz Firm, LLC, says that suing drug companies for producing and selling unsafe opioid drugs is an important step in America’s battle against the opioid epidemic.
Fact: Drug overdose is the leading cause of accidental death in the U.S.
Fact #2: The number of opioid-related overdose deaths in the U.S. skyrocketed by staggering 200 percent between 2000 and 2014.
Although opioids are being sold and marketed as medications that alleviate pain, some of these opioid drugs, including OxyContin and Vicodin, mimic illegal drug Heroin’s effects on the body.
Yes, opioid drugs do help relieve pain, but they also carry a plethora of potential side effects and risks, which is why opioids are legally available in Pennsylvania and elsewhere in the U.S. only when prescribed by doctors.
When used as prescribed by a doctor, opioids are actually helpful despite carrying some side effects… or so most of us think. Unfortunately, cases in which medical professionals failed to properly prescribe opioids are not unheard of. “In fact, overprescription of opioids and failure to timely react to early signs of opioid addiction become the basis of thousands of medical malpractice lawsuits against negligent or careless healthcare providers each year,” says our experienced opioid-related medical malpractice attorney in Philadelphia.
There is a long list of opioid drugs sold in the U.S., including but not limited to Morphine, Vicodin, Fentanyl, Methadone, Oxycodone, and Hydrocodone, but all of them can become dangerous or even deadly when misused or abused.
Contrary to the popular belief, a person who misused or abuses opioid drugs is not always solely responsible for his or her opioid addiction or any harm caused by opioids. Oftentimes, physicians fail to warn of all potential risks and side effects associated with opioid use.
If you or your loved one are taking opioids, it is important to recognize side effects of opioid use:
It is just as important to recognize alarming signs of opioid abuse and addiction, the risk of which increases with the increases in frequency and dose:
Unless you are represented by a skilled medical malpractice lawyer in Philadelphia or elsewhere in Pennsylvania, proving that your healthcare provider is responsible for your opioid-related injury or your family member’s opioid addiction or overdose may be tricky, because you are expected to demonstrate evidence that the doctor deviated from the accepted standards of care when prescribing the opioid drug and/or monitoring you to recognize early signs of opioid addiction.
Contact The Weitz Firm, LLC, to discuss your case and determine the best course of action to seek compensation for all the damages and losses caused by opioid use, misuse, abuse, or addiction. Call our offices at 267-587-6240 to get a free consultation.