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legalgems, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 9910
Experience:  Just Answer consultant at Self employed
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I was taking atorvastatin as directed by my cardiologist. I

Customer Question

I was taking atorvastatin as directed by my cardiologist.
I incurred kidney damage resulting in a lengthy hospitalization
I am currently on dialysis and the long term effect is unknown
at this time. The condition also impacted my bladder and liver.
I am a male 5' 10" currently weighing 125 lbs.
This all began May 1916.
Submitted: 12 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  legalgems replied 12 months ago.

I am very sorry to hear this; is this directly attributable to the medication,and do you believe it is due to an error in the dosage as prescribed by the doctor, or due to the recently alleged affects of this medicine?

Customer: replied 12 months ago.
Medication for sure but the doctor should be aware of ths.
The info is out there.
Customer: replied 12 months ago.
He prescribed 80 mgs. That's the full load
Expert:  legalgems replied 12 months ago.

Yes, it is, so there are 2 issues (I presume from the most recent post that this recently happened - i e post 2012);

so the first issue is product liability on the part of the manufacturers. That can attach based on 3 concepts:

the first is defective manufacturing, the second is dangerous side effects that the manufacturer knew of, (or should have known of) but concealed; the third is improper marketing.

Basically the manufacturer can discharge the liability by providing the information to the doctor, or by including a detailed warning of the risks with the medication. There are also what is called "unavoidably unsafe" medications that have potentially harmful side effects but they cannot be avoided thus the duty to warn; it is then up to the doctor and the patient to determine if the benefits outweigh the risks.

Anyone in the chain of distribution is liable (ie hospital, doctor, pharmacist) etc, if they fail to warn of the side effects; however, if the disclosures contained on the medication are detailed, the consumer has a more difficult time to argue that the information was not available.

The other option is the medical malpractice avenue, as against the prescriber - this involves showing that the doctor was negligent in prescribing this particular medicine (ie the risks did not outweigh the benefits), that something in plaintiff's history would be contra indicative of this prescription, and that the doctor was negligent based on ordinary and reasonable standard of care exercised in the profession. So if the dosage was unnecessarily high, for example, and that contributed to the resulting medical problems, that would be grounds for a suit.

Medical malpractice cases have been more difficult to bring successfully in the past decade; for example, to proceed, a plaintiff must have a merit affidavit-basically an affidavit from an expert stating there appears to be good cause for a complaint.

There are attorneys that specialize in medical malpractice, and product liability cases; we are not permitted to give specific referrals but you can contact the state bar:

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(no additional charges are incurred).

Information provided is for educational purposes only. Consultation with a personal attorney is always recommended so your particular facts may be considered. Thank you and take care.

Expert:  legalgems replied 11 months ago.

Hi- just checking in to see if you needed clarification on any of the above information. If so please post here (there is no additional charge for this) and I will do my best to get you the requested information.

Thank you!