Eye Drop Recall: What You Need to Know
Eye Drop Recall: What You Need to Know
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Eye Drop Recall: What You Need to Know
In February 2023, Global Pharma Healthcare recalled two artificial tears eye drop products. Some consumers had reported eye infections and other health issues connected to the use of these eye drops. However, for some individuals, the recall came too late, with some losing their vision, eyeballs, and even their lives due to an infection with the drug-resistant bacteria Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
Did you or a loved one develop an infection from eye drops involved in the eye drop recall? You could have legal recourse and pursue compensation. Contact Morgan & Morgan now to find out more.
What Is the Eye Drop Recall?
A recall is typically issued to pull a medication or product off the market due to safety concerns. A medication, such as eye drops, may pose a risk to consumers due to the following:
- Harmful side effects
- Interactions with other medications
- Lack of adequate labeling and instructions
- Manufacturing defects
Global Pharma Healthcare issued the voluntary eye drop recall after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported an outbreak of bacterial infections linked to the product. These infections were caused by a rare drug-resistant strain of the Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria (VIM-GES-CRPA) which is extremely challenging to treat. This specific bacteria strain had never been reported in the U.S. before this outbreak.
Affected eye drops include EzriCare Artificial Tears Lubricant Eye Drops and Delsam Pharma Artificial Tears Lubricant Eye Drops.
Further Eye Drop Recalls
In early March, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recalled additional eye drops due to potential sterility issues with the products. The recalled brands include Apotex Corp Brimonidine Tartrate Ophthalmic Solution (0.15%), Pharmedica USA LLC Purely Soothing 15% MSM Drops, and Teva’s Clear Eyes Once Daily Eye Allergy Itch Relief.
How Many People Are Affected by the Eye Drop Recall?
As of March 2023, the CDC has identified 68 patients in several states with VIM-GES-CRPA. More than half of the patients are linked to four healthcare facilities. To date, three people have passed away, eight individuals have lost their vision, and four patients had to have their eyeballs removed due to the bacteria. Most of these patients reported using EzriCare Artificial Tears. The affected products were distributed nationwide and sold online and in retail stores.
Currently, the CDC is testing unopened bottles of EzriCare Artificial Tears to establish whether the eye drops were contaminated during manufacturing. The agency advises patients and healthcare providers to stop using EzriCare Artificial Tears immediately and wait for further guidance from CDC and FDA.
Consumers who have any of the recalled eye drops should immediately stop using them and contact their doctor or pharmacist. Global Pharma Healthcare is offering refunds to persons who purchased the recalled products.
How Serious Is Pseudomonas Aeruginosa?
Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a type of bacteria found naturally in soil and water. It can also exist on healthy individuals’ skin, inside the nose, and in the throat. However, in people with weakened immune systems, such as cancer patients, the bacteria could cause severe and life-threatening infections. Pseudomonas aeruginosa may not only affect the eyes but can also cause severe infections of the lungs, skin, and blood, among other health issues.
Is Pseudomonas Aeruginosa Contagious?
Pseudomonas aeruginosa can spread from person to person through surfaces and equipment or lack of hand hygiene. There are a few things you can do to prevent Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections from spreading, including:
- Washing your hands often and thoroughly with soap and water
- Avoiding contact with people who are sick
- Disinfecting surfaces that may be contaminated with bacteria
The recall also highlights the importance of proper hygiene practices when using eye drops. Always store eye drops in a clean, cool place, and never share them with others. Washing your hands before and after using eye drops is also essential.
When to See a Doctor
Symptoms associated with Pseudomonas aeruginosa can include:
- Eye discharge
- Redness and swelling of the eyelid
- Eye pain or discomfort
- Sensitivity to light
- Blurry vision
Contact your doctor immediately if you recently used the recalled eye drops and experience discomfort, infections, or other symptoms. If you have a bacterial infection, your doctor can discuss appropriate treatment methods and may prescribe antibiotics.
How Morgan & Morgan Can Help Victims of Eye Drop Injuries
If you were harmed by recalled eye drops, you might feel overwhelmed and unsure of what to do next. However, you do not have to face this alone. An experienced attorney at Morgan & Morgan can walk you through your options, file an eye drop recall lawsuit on your behalf, and fight for the compensation you need.
Understanding Your Legal Options
If you experienced an eye infection or other injury after using the recalled eye drops, you could sue the manufacturer, distributor, or other parties involved in the production and distribution of the product. We can help you understand your legal options and determine if you have a case.
Building a Strong Case
To have the best shot at winning a lawsuit against a powerful pharmaceutical or distributor, our attorneys will gather as much evidence as possible to build a strong case, which can include the following:
- Medical records
- Witness statements
- Expert witness testimony
Your attorney will also demonstrate that the eye drops were defectively designed or manufactured or that the manufacturer failed to warn of the risks associated with using the product.
Navigating the Legal System
Filing a lawsuit can be a complex and lengthy process, and there are strict rules and deadlines that you must follow. Your attorney can guide you through the legal system and ensure your case is filed properly and on time. They can also negotiate a fair settlement with the other side and represent you in court.
Holding the Responsible Parties Accountable
By standing up to a pharmaceutical company, you are sending the powerful message that a corporation cannot simply disregard your health and put profits over safety. Morgan & Morgan fights for the injured and not the powerful. We have a successful track record of holding the big bullies accountable, recovering maximum compensation for our clients, and helping to prevent unethical companies from harming other consumers.
Pursuing Maximum Compensation
At Morgan & Morgan, we know your damages are so much more than just medical bills. We can assess the full impact of your eye drop recall injury on your life to arrive at a fair settlement amount. You may be entitled to various damages, such as healthcare costs and lost wages.
We never settle for less, so our clients can look to the future confidently and without fear of financial hardship. At Morgan & Morgan, we always pursue the full value of your claim and negotiate hard with the responsible parties or insurers to obtain full and fair compensation for you.
Providing Emotional Support
Filing a legal claim while recovering from an injury can feel overwhelming and exhausting. Morgan & Morgan knows that you need an attorney who has the legal expertise required and can handle your case with the compassion and empathy you deserve. We see the physical, emotional, and financial toll of injuries daily in our practice and understand what you and your loved ones are going through.
If your health is significantly affected by the products involved in the eye drop recall, don’t hesitate to contact us. The time to file a claim may be limited, and we could start working on your case right away to give you the best chance of recovering what you deserve.
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How Did Pseudomonas Aeruginosa Get into the Eye Drops?
Nobody knows for sure how the eye drops became contaminated with the dangerous VIM-GES-CRPA strain. While the CDC confirmed the presence of the Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria in opened bottles of Ezricare and Delsam eye drops, the agency has yet to determine whether closed bottles of the eye drops also contain the bacteria.
However, while investigations are ongoing, the CDC suspects bacterial contamination occurred during the production process and notes that the drops affected by the eye drop recall did not contain any preservatives. Some brands implicated in the eye drop recall also had a problem with cracked caps, which may have allowed bacteria to enter the eye drop container.
Could I File an Eye Drop Lawsuit and Pursue Compensation?
If you or someone you love used the recalled eye drops and suffered from infections, vision loss, or other injuries, you may have legal grounds to file a lawsuit. Our attorneys can assess the validity of your claim and identify any potential defendants who may be liable for your injuries, which could include:
- The manufacturer
- Other parties involved in the production and distribution chain
Compensation You Could Receive
If your eye drop recall lawsuit is successful, you may be entitled to recover compensation for a range of damages related to your injuries, such as
- Medical expenses
- Loss of life enjoyment
- Permanent disfigurement
- Lost income
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional anguish
You could also qualify for other losses, depending on your case. If the court determines that a manufacturer’s conduct was particularly egregious, you could receive punitive damages and compensation. An attorney at Morgan & Morgan can evaluate your damages and determine the entire worth of your case.
I Have No Adverse Reactions – Can I Continue Using Recalled Eye Drops?
The CDC has urged individuals to immediately stop using all eye drops involved in the eye drop recall while investigations are ongoing, even if they do not experience any adverse health effects. Rather than continuing to use the eye drops, ask your doctor for a safe substitute.
How Can I Determine Whether My Eye Drops Are Affected by the Recall?
There are a few ways to find out whether you are affected by the eye drop recall:
- Check the FDA website for a list of recalled products.
- Contact the manufacturer of your eye drops.
- Get in touch with the store where you purchased the eye drops.
In the meantime, if you are unsure whether your eye drops are affected by the recall, promptly contact your doctor or pharmacist for clarification.
What Is the Average Settlement in an Eye Drop Recall Lawsuit?
Since lawsuits are only beginning to be filed, no known settlements exist. Therefore, it is impossible to say how much money victims could recover. However, the worth of a settlement is generally determined by various factors, including:
- The severity of your injuries
- The extent of damages (medical bills, wage loss, etc.)
- The negligent party’s degree of negligence
Having a seasoned and tenacious attorney by your side can help you recover the compensation you deserve.
My Loved One Died Due to an Infection with Pseudomonas Aeruginosa; Am I Entitled to Damages?
If your loved one dies due to an eye drop-acquired infection from recalled eye drops, you could file a wrongful death lawsuit and recover damages. While compensation varies from state to state, surviving family members could receive the following:
- Lost income and benefits from the decedent
- Lost services, such as childcare
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of parental guidance
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Medical treatment costs before death
- Pain and suffering
Damages will depend on the circumstances of the case, including the extent of your losses and the manufacturer’s level of negligence. Contact an attorney as soon as possible if you believe you have a case, as the time to file wrongful death claims may be limited.
Contact Us Today if You Suffered an Eye Drop Injury
If you or a loved one has been injured by the eye drops implicated in the recent eye drop recall, you need an attorney who will fight tirelessly and aggressively for your rights. Don’t let an unethical manufacturer get away scot-free, leaving you with the burden of paying for their mistake. Hiring Morgan & Morgan is free and easy. Contact us today to find out more with a free case evaluation.