Faruqi & Faruqi, LLP on Pharmaceutical Litigation & the Opioid Epidemic
The Opioid Crisis in the United States
The Opioid Epidemic
An increase in opioid medications has led to the widespread misuse of prescription and non-prescription pain relievers. The opioid epidemic has had a detrimental effect on communities, and the problematic use of drugs such as oxycodone, morphine, codeine, and fentanyl has led to dependence and death. Faruqi & Faruqi, LLP investigates on behalf of consumer, patients and families who are victims of permanent neurological, cardiovascular, or hematological effects as the result of opioids. Numerous suits have accused pharmaceutical companies and opioid distributors of ignoring the improper use of the drugs and deceptive marketing tactics. With a dedicated team of experienced lawyers, Faruqi & Faruqi, LLP outlines some of the damaging effects of opioid use.
Who is Liable?
The first wave of opioid use began in the 1990s when medical professionals began prescribing opioids at a higher rate than ever before. Pharmaceutical companies assured individuals that the risk of addiction was relatively low. Likewise, various marketing strategies ignored the harmful potential of opioids as they were being used for the treatment of non-malignant pain relief.
Effects of Opioid Use
According to Faruqi & Faruqi, LLP, opioids are highly addictive and due to false marketing; thousands of individuals have suffered damaging side effects. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 63,600 drug overdose deaths in 2016 were the result of an opioid, and an average of 115 Americans die every day from an overdose.
Opioids are effective at treating chronic pain, however, when used for an extended period, can have a detrimental neurological effect and long-term use can reduce the body’s natural ability to tolerate pain. Opioids are often taken longer than prescribed given their addictive nature. Older adults are at a higher risk of misuse, as they are often taking multiple prescriptions at once making pain management a challenge.
Similarly, researchers have found a link between prescription opioids and depression. Opioid misuse has also led to an increase in neonatal abstinence syndrome — where the use of opioid during pregnancy can result in drug withdrawal syndrome in newborns.
Fighting the Nation-Wide Epidemic
Comprehensive strategies have been implemented to combat the opioid epidemic in the United States, and it is categorized as a public health emergency. The FDA has undertaken several initiatives including ensuring proper warnings on drug labels and advocating educational campaigns to stress that non-opioid treatments are the preferred first step in reducing chronic pain.
Faruqi & Faruqi, LLP has an extensive professional resume and is a leader in civil litigation cases. Since 1995, the firm has led counsel on various high-profile cases providing significant recoveries for their clients. For more information visit www.faruqilaw.com.