Are We About to See More Ozempic Lawsuits?

ELI5: Negligence

Ozempic has been creating quite a lot of buzz, including talks of lawsuits. Are we about to see more lawsuits in 2024? 

What’s Product Liability? 

When Utah personal injury lawyers talk about product liability, they’re referring to the liability which entities involved in the creation of a product carry. Those who were involved in the design, manufacturing, and distribution of a product could be liable for injuries consumers sustain while using the product as directed. For example, SnapChat pulled their infamous speed filter after several people were severely injured while using the app and driving at high speeds—often over one hundred miles per hour. SnapChat’s legal team was likely concerned that the filter could be considered to be an “unreasonably dangerous product” because it may have influenced teenagers and young adults to drive at dangerous speeds for social media fame. 

How Is Product Liability Relevant to Ozempic Lawsuits? 

Entities involved in the creation, manufacture, and distribution of pharmaceutical products have a duty to ensure that those products are safe for consumption. Right now, the largest concerns with Ozempic have to do with what Utah personal injury lawyers refer to as a marketing defect. When pharmaceutical companies create a new drug, they have a duty to warn doctors and consumers of any potential side effects. While it’s difficult to hold pharmaceutical companies liable for side effects they could not have foreseen, they are more likely to be held liable if they knew about side effects—or reasonably should have known about side effects—but failed to disclose them. A lot of the lawsuits that are coming out related to weight managements drugs such as Ozempic have to do with the side effects. Plaintiffs are alleging that the companies knew, or reasonably should have known, about the side effects of these medications, and ought to have done more to warn consumers. 

Other Liable Parties 

When it comes to pharmaceutical drugs, side effects are not the only cause for liability. In fact, there are countless ways a pharmaceutical company could face liability for the damages their products cause consumers to sustain. For example, not only should medications warn consumers of side effects, they should also warn consumers about potential impairment resulting from the medication. If you have prescription pain killers or muscle relaxers, for instance, you have probably noticed there’s a warning telling consumers not to operate heavy machinery while taking the medication. Though the following does not usually involve the pharmaceutical company that designed the medication, it’s important to note that manufacturing plants could also be held liable if a batch of medicine is contaminated, or otherwise defective, and goes on to harm consumers. Retailers could be liable defective or expired products. Any entity that plays a part in getting the product from creation to the consumer, can be named as a defendant. 

Medical Malpractice 

Doctors could also face medical malpractice if they’re not careful when prescribing medications. Ozempic carries a specific warning that it not intended for weight loss, and is simply meant to treat diabetes; however, many celebrity doctors seemingly have no qualms about prescribing Ozempic for their famous clients who aren’t suffering from obesity and do not have any diabetes-related complications. If one of these celebrities became sick due to using Ozempic, or another similar weight-management product, the doctor who prescribed it could face some liability, as taking Ozempic especially when you have a normal BMI is considered to be dangerous. If a doctor could have reasonably foreseen that prescribing a certain medication could harm a patient, they could be liable if the medication does indeed harm the patient. While it’s less likely that a doctor would face liability when a patient suffers from a known side effect, doctors could still face civil consequences if there were extenuating circumstances that made the medication particularly dangerous for the patient to consume given their known medical history. For example, if a patient is allergic to Oxycodone, prescribing the patient Dilaudid is likely a bad idea since Oxycodone and Dilaudid are well known cross-allergens. 

What about Black Market Ozempic? 

Can’t afford Ozempic? Can’t get a doctor to prescribe it for you? Why not just get some off of eBay or in Mexico? While such weight management drugs hopefully aren’t accessible on eBay, many people are indeed turning to dubious sources in order to get their hands on medications such as Ozempic, Wegovy, or Monjourno. Those who are injured by taking black market weight management drugs may have limited recourse when it comes to seeking compensation. For example, let’s say a woman who’s suffering from anorexia purchases a weight management drug through unofficial sources. If she sustains injury due to consuming the medication, it may be difficult for her to hold the pharmaceutical company liable for her injuries—even if the medication she procured was in fact the real thing. This is because she wasn’t using the medication as intended. 

When You’ve Sustained Injury 

If you’ve sustained injury due to a defective product, or a negligent doctor, Moxie Law Group is here for you. Contact us today for a free consultation. 

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