A new study published in the
Journal of Medical Toxicology claims calls to poison control centers involving dietary supplements increased
by almost 50 percent between 2005 and 2012. Every 24 minutes on average,
poison control centers receive phone calls involving adverse reactions
to these products.
Dietary supplements are products that may contain herbs, minerals, vitamins,
botanicals, amino acids, metabolites or extracts of active ingredients.
However, these products do not receive the same type of Food and Drug
Administration (FDA) oversight as prescription medications or medical
devices. Clinical trials are not required for these products because they
are not intended to treat or prevent medical conditions. Relaxed oversight
means that some of these products may be dangerous.
There are recent examples of dietary supplements or homeopathic products
causing deaths and adverse outcomes. For example, Hyland’s homeopathic
teething product was recalled after the FDA received reports of deaths
and adverse events. This product contained varying amounts of belladonna
alkaloids, also known as deadly nightshade.
Some dietary supplements can be spiked with harmful substances. In 2016,
more than a dozen bodybuilding and weight loss supplements sold in the U.S. were found to
contain oxilofrine, a stimulant linked to cardiac arrest.
Journal of Medical Toxicology study also identified energy drinks as products responsible for poison
control center calls and adverse effects. In the U.S., the energy drink
market is worth billions of dollars. However, several
product liability lawsuits have linked energy drinks to kidney failure, heart attacks and strokes.
Are Dietary Supplement Manufacturers Liable for Injuries or Deaths?
Depending on the circumstances, it may be possible to hold dietary supplement
or energy drink manufacturers accountable for injurie or deaths. If you
or a loved one suffered harm while using one of these products, the
Washington DC product liability attorneys at Regan Zambri Long, PLLC can help determine whether you could file a lawsuit.