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Why Do Dangerous Drugs Reach the Market?

On average, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves of a new drug once every two weeks, or about 25 new medications a year. If you watch the news closely enough, you will find that a similar number of prescription medications are found to be unreasonably harmful in one way or another each year. You can even just listen closely to drug advertisements to hear a seemingly endless list of harmful side effects of a drug the FDA has approved. Not only should this raise your eyebrow at why someone would want to use that drug, it should also raise a lot of questions, specifically, “Why does the FDA keep approving dangerous drugs?”

Putting False Faith in Pharmaceuticals

When you see that a drug has been approved by the FDA, you feel a sense of relief that someone has tested it for safety. But what no one ever tells the consumer is that the Food and Drug Administration do not conduct those tests themselves. Instead, the FDA requires that the drug manufacturer perform preliminary safety studies themselves and report back to the FDA, who will then approve or disapprove the drug for widespread consumer use.

The problem with this system is immediately apparent. It is akin to letting a thief into a bank vault alone and then asking him if he stole anything. Would you trust his answer? Would you not want to check his pockets?

Pharmaceutical giants can falsify their reports, or conduct tests that are scientifically flawed, such as ones that use too small a sample group or have too short a duration to take long-term side effects into account. If and when something goes wrong and someone suffers because of the poor standard of clinical testing, the drug manufacturers can throw money at the problem until it goes away. All of the largest drug companies combined only paid out $7 billion in lawsuits between 2004 and 2010 when, during that time, just one of them made $245 billion.

Does the FDA Offer Solutions?

When the FDA is made aware of a dangerous drug, they do take steps to try to improve the situation for consumers, but these steps are arguably ineffective. In a large percentage of cases, the FDA will require the drug manufacturer to retest their product but, once again, they do not oversee or participate in that testing at all. The original problem of trusting in the people profiting off the system is met again.

For example, fluoxetine has long been considered a dangerous drug that increases suicidal tendencies in many users when it is supposed to decrease it, and yet it has been consistently sold for medical use since the 80s. The FDA simply does not have the means to make immediate impacts.

If you have been hurt by a dangerous drug, your best bet to find compensation and make things right again may be to take legal action yourself with a Stuart personal injury attorney from Lauri J. Goldstein & Associates, PLLC. We have more than 75 years of combined legal experience helping people just like you in all manners of personal injury cases, including those dealing with dangerous prescription drugs. Call us at 866-675-4427, tell us what drug is causing you harm during a free case evaluation, and we can tell you what to do next.