Blindness Caused by Dangerous and Defective Drugs
Whenever new drugs are developed, pharmaceutical manufacturers have an obligation to ensure their products are thoroughly tested in order to identify potential side effects and complications. If a manufacturer fails to provide adequate warning of these side effects, they can be held responsible for any injuries that occur as a result of their negligence.
Pharmaceutical injuries happen all too often, as competing manufacturers strive to dominate the marketplace, rushing new drugs through the FDA approval process and performing insufficient clinical trials. Blindness is an especially devastating consequence of certain defective drugs. A person’s lifestyle, employment eligibility, future income, and emotional health can all be dramatically changed just because they were not warned in advance of a drug’s inherent risks.
The following drugs have been linked to an increased risk of blindness in patients:
- Antidepressants – A recent study discovered that certain types of antidepressants, called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), have led to an increased risk of cataracts in patients 65+ years old. Cataracts are responsible for 48% of age-related cases of blindness worldwide.
- Diabetes drugs (Actos and Avandia) – The popular diabetes drugs Actos and Avandia render diabetes patients 3 to 6 times more likely to develop diabetic macular edema, a condition that causes the eye’s retinas to swell and thicken, resulting in blindness.
- Avastin – Although it is not a fault of the drug itself, many ophthalmologists have been using a repackaged form of a cancer drug called Avastin to treat wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD) in patients. Unfortunately, patients have suffered serious eye infections and blindness as a result of this off-label use, which is not FDA-approved.
If you have suffered a pharmaceutical injury because of a dangerous or defective drug, please contact our experienced Philadelphia product liability lawyers today for a free case evaluation.