The opioid crisis, which is the center of ongoing concern and debate, is one of the most catastrophic health epidemics in the history of the United States. Millions of Americans are struggling with addiction to prescription painkillers and harder drugs. However, in many cases, this dependency began with legal drugs, like OxyCotin, prescribed by doctors to treat pain after medical procedures or discomfort from certain conditions. As a result of negligent prescription and marketing practices, the opioid epidemic now costs U.S. citizens and taxpayers billions of dollars a year. Our New Orleans opioid attorneys know that now, individuals and government entities have begun fighting back by filing lawsuits against the doctors and pharmaceutical companies that contributed to this crisis.
If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction as a result of a prescription, then the attorneys at Martzell, Bickford & Centola may be able to help you file an opioid lawsuit. Currently, we are reviewing individual claims involving opioid addiction. We can investigate your situation and advise you on your legal options to hold negligent companies and doctors accountable. Our offices are based in New Orleans, but we accept clients nationwide.
Why Is There an Opioid Epidemic?
The history of the opioid epidemic stretches back for decades. At that time, large pharmaceutical companies like Purdue Pharma began aggressive marketing campaigns for opioids like OxyCotin. These powerful drugs were originally developed to treat the pain associated with end-of-life cancer care. These drugs alter a user's brain chemistry, meaning that they carry a high risk of addiction. However, in the 1990s, drug companies began marketing opioids to doctors as effective means of pain management for other conditions. These campaigns downplayed the risks of addiction, claiming that a very low percentage of opioid users developed a dependency.
As a result of these campaigns, doctors began prescribing opioids to treat minor conditions like arthritis and post-surgical discomfort. These campaigns may have also led doctors to fail to properly warn patients of the strength of these drugs or the risk of dependency. Additionally, doctors may have also failed to check a patient for a history of addiction or other warning signs before prescribing a course of opioids that could last weeks.
Thus, a patient may become opioid dependent while taking a legitimate prescription. However, once the dependence begins, then a person may return to the same doctor for more pills. Then, once that strategy no longer works, he or she may visit other doctors and pharmacies looking for more medication. Finally, when a person no longer has the resources to support these habits, then he or she may turn to cheaper illegal drugs, like heroin.
The combination of doctors overprescribing opioids and the sense of complacency created by marketing campaigns from drug companies may have contributed to the opioid epidemic currently facing the country. In fact, in 2007, Purdue Pharma pled guilty to misleading the medical community and patients about the addiction risks of OxyCotin to protect the company's profits.
How Do I File an Opioid Lawsuit?
The destructive spiral of opioid addiction has affected millions of people throughout the United States. If you are struggling with opioid addiction or lost a loved one due to an overdose, then you may have legal options. The opioid attorneys at Martzell, Bickford & Centola may be able to help you file an opioid lawsuit.
Depending on the circumstances, you may be able to file a claim against the doctor who originally prescribed the opioids. We can investigate to determine if the physician took all proper precautions, such as checking your medical history. We also work with medical experts to determine whether the prescription was necessary to treat your condition.
Additionally, you may be able to file an opioid lawsuit against the pharmaceutical company that manufactured the medication. We can determine whether negligent or misleading marketing contributed to the situation that led to your condition. If so, then you may be entitled to compensation from the drug company as well as the prescribing doctor.
Questions? Call Our Opioid Attorneys Today
If you believe that you may have grounds for an opioid lawsuit, then contact a New Orleans opioid attorney at Martzell, Bickford & Centola today. We offer free initial consultations, so that you can learn your rights and options at no cost. Our law firm has significant experience with these types of claims. In the past, we have successfully represented individuals in class actions and lawsuits of national significance.
Call (504) 581-9065 or contact our law firm online today to find out how we can help you.