On February 1st, 2023, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a health alert to doctors nationwide urging them to be on the lookout for an outbreak of carbapenem-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa (CRPA). This bacteria is resistant to certain antibiotics and can cause serious infections in humans. After extensive testing, the CDC has identified the presence of CRPA in opened bottles of EzriCare eye drops, which has accordingly been linked to the outbreak. On February 2nd, manufacturer Global Pharma Healthcare announced a voluntary recall of eye drops and artificial tears distributed by Delsam Pharma and EzriCare due to the reports of contamination.
Just a week after the recall, lawsuits related to the use of EzriCare began to be filed. According to the CDC at the time of the recall, over 68 patients in 16 states were identified as suffering from a Pseudomonas aeruginosa infection linked to use of the contaminated eye drops. Three patients passed away due to the infection, while four others had to have their eyes removed. Other patients have lost vision in one or both eyes or had to receive corneal transplants.
At Pond Lehocky Giordano, we see pharmaceutical liability lawsuits all too often. Our team of dedicated lawyers is committed to protecting the little guy from pharmaceutical corporations like EzriCare. If you or a family member has suffered or passed away due to an infection caused by EzriCare eye drops, you deserve the maximum possible compensation so that you can face the future with confidence. You shouldn’t have to shoulder the burden of the pain, suffering, and exorbitant medical bills caused by negligent pharmaceutical companies. With over 250 years of combined courtroom experience and a track record of over 100,000 successful cases, our experienced trial lawyers are more than qualified to represent you in your lawsuit.
To schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with the legal experts at Pond Lehocky Giordano LLP, call 1-800-568-7500 or fill out our contact form today.
What caused the eye drop contamination?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) took swift action by subjecting EzriCare eye drops to rigorous laboratory testing. Both infected individuals and non-infected consumers contributed samples from previously opened bottles of EzriCare eye drops, originating from various production lots. Their testing confirmed the presence of Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria in the eye drops. Moreover, a comprehensive analysis demonstrated a match between the bacterial strains found in the EzriCare bottles and those detected in individuals affected by the outbreak. This compelling evidence solidified the EzriCare eye drops as the primary source of the infections.
Unlike many eye drop products on the market, including EzriCare Artificial Tears eye drops, which are preservative-free, these particular eye drops provide an environment conducive to bacterial growth. The absence of preservatives, while promoting gentleness for sensitive eyes, inadvertently creates an environment where bacteria can thrive.
Understanding Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria infections
Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria are a type of gram-negative bacterium (a kind of bacterium that is more difficult for white blood cells and antibiotics to fight) that are often found in water, soil, and the skin of healthy individuals. While most healthy people don’t experience any symptoms from these bacteria, they can cause infections in individuals with weakened immune systems, particularly in hospital settings.
Hospital-acquired infections (HAIs) are a serious concern for patients and healthcare providers. These infections can be caused by a variety of bacteria, viruses, and fungi. Pseudomonas aeruginosa is one of the most common causes of HAIs, particularly in patients who have undergone surgery or who have weakened immune systems.
Pseudomonas aeruginosa transmission and symptoms
Pseudomonas aeruginosa can be transmitted through contact with contaminated surfaces, such as medical equipment or other objects within healthcare facilities. The bacterium can also be transmitted from person to person, particularly among patients with compromised immune systems.
Symptoms of Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections can vary depending on the site of infection. Common symptoms include:
- Localized infection symptoms
Different parts of the body may experience symptoms commonly associated with infections. For example, infections of the skin can cause redness, swelling, and pain, while infections of the lungs can cause coughing, shortness of breath, and chest pain. Death may occur when the bacteria enter the bloodstream. The CDC reported that some of the patients involved in this recent outbreak had respiratory or urinary tract infections.
Pseudomonas aeruginosa eye infections
Because the recent Pseudomonas aeruginosa outbreak was caused by contaminated artificial tears, most patients experienced eye infections. Symptoms of a Pseudomonas aeruginosa eye infection can include:
- Blurry vision
- Eye discomfort or pain
- Unusual sensitivity to light
- Redness of the eyes or eyelids
- Green, yellow, or clear discharge from the eyes
- Feeling of something in your eye
Any time you suspect you have the symptoms of an eye infection, you should seek medical care immediately.
What kinds of damages are involved in the EzriCare eye drops lawsuit?
When you buy and consume pharmaceutical products in the United States, you have certain rights afforded by the law. The basis of these lawsuits rests on the fact that the manufacturer (Global Pharma Healthcare) and the distributors (EzriCare and Delsam Pharma) failed to warn consumers about the contamination of their artificial tears and eye drops, which was caused by their negligence. As a result, many consumers experienced serious adverse health effects.
In pharmaceutical liability lawsuits, victims can sue pharmaceutical companies for the damages they suffered. Such damages typically include:
- Permanent disability
- Pain and suffering
- Past, current, and future medical bills
- Loss of earning capacity
- Lost wages
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- And more
If your loved one passed away due to an infection caused by contaminated artificial tears, you can still sue for wrongful death. Although nothing can replace your loved one, you still deserve compensation so that you and your family can avoid financial insecurity while you emotionally recover and move forward.
Frequently asked questions about the EzriCare eye drops lawsuit
Who can file an EzriCare eye drops lawsuit?
If you used EzriCare or Delsam Pharma Artificial Tears and suffered vision loss, blindness, or other injuries as a result of infection, you could be eligible to file a lawsuit. If you think you may have a case, do not hesitate to reach out to a lawyer. In fact, the sooner the better – the statute of limitations for filing a lawsuit differs from state to state and can prevent you from getting the justice you deserve if you wait too long. For a free consultation on your case, call Pond Lehocky Giordano at 1-800-568-7500 now.
Do I need to hire a lawyer to file a lawsuit against EzriCare?
Technically, no – however, you would vastly reduce your chance at winning compensation. Major corporations like EzriCare will have strong defense lawyers that will have a thorough strategy for refuting your claims. An experienced pharmaceutical liability lawyer can help you navigate the complex legal system and provide invaluable guidance throughout the legal proceedings while maximizing your chance of receiving the compensation you deserve.
How much does a pharmaceutical liability lawyer cost?
Pharmaceutical liability lawyers typically operate on a contingency fee basis, offering their services to clients without requiring any upfront payment. This fee structure allows individuals to access legal representation, even if they do not have the financial means to pay for legal services outright.
Under a contingency fee agreement, the lawyer’s compensation is contingent upon the successful resolution of your case. If you win your case, the lawyer will receive a percentage of your settlement or jury award as their fee. This percentage can vary depending on several factors, including the complexity of your case, the potential damages involved, and the law firm you choose to represent you.
What should I do if I had an eye infection caused by EzriCare eye drops?
If you’ve experienced an infection caused by EzriCare Artificial Tears, it’s crucial to take thorough steps towards potentially recovering damages. The following steps cover the necessary actions you should consider and will help you navigate the legal process more effectively. By following these steps, you can increase the chances of a successful resolution to your case.
Document your symptoms and gather vital evidence
One of the first things you should do is document your symptoms. To prepare for your legal consultation, it’s essential to gather any medical records and documents that may be relevant to your case. If necessary, request copies of any diagnostic results from your doctor. Additionally, make an effort to recall when you began using EzriCare or Delsam Pharma products, the frequency of use, and the specific brands you used. Providing this information to your legal team will greatly assist them in evaluating the strength of your case and devising an appropriate strategy.
Prepare questions and seek clarification
In order to make the most of your legal consultation, it’s important to write down any questions you may have. You will likely have inquiries about the legal process, the subsequent steps involved, and the potential settlement amount in your eye drops lawsuit. Conduct thorough research to identify the best options for legal counsel to represent you.
Understand your legal rights
As a consumer in the United States, you possess certain rights and protections concerning the products you purchase and use. Familiarize yourself with product liability and consumer fraud laws and regulations to enhance your understanding during discussions with potential legal counsel. This knowledge will enable you to actively participate in the legal process and make informed decisions.
Select the right law firm
Choosing the right law firm is crucial to the success of your EzriCare eye drops lawsuit. Engage in research to identify reputable options that align with your needs and values. A dependable law firm will be transparent, providing honest and direct information about the legal process and the potential viability of your case. This will instill confidence and ensure you receive the highest quality legal representation.
By diligently following these steps, you will be well-prepared to proceed with your case. Taking copious notes throughout this journey is vital. However, by partnering with a reliable law firm like Pond Lehocky Giordano LLP, you can trust that your case is in capable hands. With our expertise and dedication to your best interests, you can move forward confidently in seeking the justice and compensation you deserve.
Contact us today for a free case evaluation
To help maximize your chances of recovering damages for the suffering you have experienced due to EzriCare artificial tears, it’s critical to have an expert product liability legal team involved. Our pharmaceutical liability lawyers manage lawsuits in all 50 states. We offer free consultations with our attorneys so that we can help you better understand your legal options and the strength of your case. For more information, call Pond Lehocky Giordano LLP at 1-800-568-7500 or fill out our contact form today.