Life-threatening allergies are an incredibly stressful aspect of everyday life for many people across Texas. When some individuals are exposed to an allergen, it is truly a life or death situation. For many, the first line of defense is an EpiPen, which can give them enough time to get to the hospital for proper treatment. Pfizer Inc. — the maker of the EpiPen — was recently accused of manufacturing hundreds of defective products, which put people’s lives on the line.
The accusations against Pfizer are quite serious, as some claims allege that people actually died because of defects in the EpiPen. Complaints include faulty injectors that failed to work properly, while others claim that epinephrine — the drug contained in the EpiPen — was able to leak out and therefore unavailable when needed. Perhaps even more upsetting is what Pfizer failed to do with most of the 171 faulty product samples it received between the years 2014 and 2017. Despite the serious nature of patient’s claims, Pfizer did not disassemble and investigate these samples.
Pfizer did later identify a part of the EpiPen that was likely faulty and potentially responsible for the failing products. Despite this, it did not initially recall or remove the affected EpiPens from circulation. These defective products remained on the market and available for use until the FDA pressured Pfizer to pull them back.
Defective products of any nature can pose serious harm to consumers. However, companies that manufacture life-saving medications should stress the safety and security of their products and should listen and respond to consumer complaints. When companies fail to take proper precautionary actions and consumers in Texas are harmed, their resulting injuries can impose a heavy financial and mental burden on themselves and their families. While nothing can undo this harm, a carefully pursued personal injury claim against the party or parties believed responsible may result in appropriate compensation for medical bills, lost wages and long-term pain and suffering.
Source: Bloomberg, “EpiPen Maker Neglected ‘Hundreds’ of Complaints About Defects“, Anna Edney, Sept. 7, 2017