Ephedra is a drug that is made from a plant called ephedra sinica, also called ma huang in its native grounds of China. The plant has been used for thousands of years in China for treating such ailments as hay fever, the common cold, and allergies. Ephedra became popularly used in the United States for use in diet pills. Ephedra was found to be very effective, leading to short-term weight-loss of people who took it as a dietary supplement. Although there was no proof of its long-term weight loss effects, many people snatched it up as a cure-all to their weight issues. However, the problems and concerns over Ephedra soon overshadowed the positive effects of the supplement.
In 1997, The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) told manufacturers that they had to include more information about the side effects of the drug on the labels of their product's packaging materials. The negative side effects of Ephedra are expansive and include irregular heartbeats, irritability, nervousness, dizziness, seizures, vomiting, headaches, insomnia, dehydration, trembling, itchy skin, hypothermia, stroke, heart attack, or even death. In 2003, the FDA moved to ban the sale of medications and supplements containing Ephedra as a result of the number of injuries and deaths that were linked to the drug.
You may be familiar with the famous baseball player who died as a result of taking supplements containing Ephedra. Steve Belcher was only 23 years old when he died during spring training after taking a supplement that contained Ephedra. It was discovered that the levels of Ephedra in his body contributed to his death. His widow filed a lawsuit, seeking $600 million in wrongful death claims. In addition to this famous death, many other people have also died or become seriously ill as a result of taking Ephedra. Despite the prior warnings to manufacturers and distributors, they continued to sell the product long after the hazards were made known to the public. It is for this reason that many lawsuits have been filed against these companies.
If you took Ephedra and had any of the side effects listed above, or if your spouse or other relative has experienced them, you should speak with an attorney about whether or not you should pursue a lawsuit for compensation. Although every case is different, you should know that other lawsuits have awarded the plaintiffs several million dollars in recovery, based on the injuries that they, or their loved ones, experienced as a result of taking Ephedra.
The only way to determine if you have a viable case against the manufacturer is to speak with an attorney who has handled personal injury cases before, preferably one with experience managing pharmaceutical drug cases. The attorney can quickly evaluate your case and let you know if you are likely to recover from damages that you have incurred. Damages resulting from hospitalization costs, medical bills, lost wages, and other such expenses can lead to a substantial settlement amount.
A company that continued to market and sell a supplement that they knew could be harmful should be punished severely. One way to punish them is to hold them liable for all of the damages that they have caused you and your family. Do not stand by and be intimidated by big corporations just because they have a lot of money and power. Contact an attorney who can fight against them and help you to get the recovery that you deserve. You have nothing to lose, so contact an attorney today and get started with a lawsuit. Most can provide you with a free consultation, at which point, your claims can be reviewed. Others offer to render legal services without requiring you to pay attorney fees until a settlement is reached. It is even possible to have all fees waived if you lose your case. These opportunities can be discussed further after contacting a lawyer who is the right fit for you.