Seizure medications are a specific class of prescription drugs that are used to prevent and lessen the occurrence of seizure incidents. These are sometimes referred to as:

  • Anticonvulsants;
  • Anti-seizure medications; and
  • Anti-epilepsy medications.

These medications are most commonly prescribed for conditions such as epilepsy.

Anticonvulsants work by slowing the rapid fire of brain neurons during seizure incidents. They are also increasingly being prescribed for other conditions, such as depression and anxiety, due to the fact that they allegedly have mood stabilizing properties as well.

Seizure medication injuries generally result from side effects that are associated with the substances. These can include, but may not be limited to:

  • Rashes;
  • Liver failure and/or liver conditions; and
  • An abnormal drop in white blood cell count, and/or in blood platelet count.

Seizure medications can also be associated with birth injuries, if the pregnant person uses them during their pregnancy. An example of this would be how research indicates that use of seizure medications may result in spina bifida, atrial septal defects (or, a hole in the heart), and other such conditions in an infant at birth.

Seizure medication injuries could be considered a type of medical malpractice issue, depending on the circumstances of each individual case. Medical malpractice occurs when a medical professional and/or healthcare organization falls below the standard duty of care that is required of them when managing, diagnosing, and/or treating a patient. This failure results in an injury or death to that patient, and is generally considered to be an act of negligence.

Medical malpractice law is what enables an injured patient to bring a claim against a negligent medical professional, as well as recover damages for the harms that were caused by their substandard conduct. Whether a medical professional can be held legally liable for a patient’s injuries will depend on the facts of the specific case, as well as the various rules and requirements of medical malpractice laws that are enacted in a particular state. It is important to note that the standards and regulations for medical malpractice can also vary between different jurisdictions within the same state.

What Are Some Common Examples Of Legal Issues That Are Associated Seizure Medication And Seizure Medication Injuries?

Seizure medication injuries can be caused by a number of factors. As such, there are various parties which may be held liable for such injuries. To reiterate, liable parties may include:

  • Physicians;
  • Doctors;
  • Pharmacy specialists, as well as other people responsible for prescribing anticonvulsants; and
  • Manufacturers and distributors of seizure medication.

As was previously mentioned, seizure medications are sometimes prescribed for reasons other than controlling seizures. Because of this, special care must be taken when prescribing anticonvulsant medications. In terms of specific legal issues that are commonly associated with seizure medication and seizure medication injuries, these include medication error and product defect.

Medication errors occur when a person is prescribed or administered the wrong medication for their condition. These errors can include:

  • Prescribing the wrong type of medicine;
  • Prescribing the wrong amount of the drug;
  • Errors when instructing the patient regarding how to take the medicine;
  • Prescribing medicine that is illegal, expired, defective, or subject to recall; and
  • Applying a prescription to the incorrect patient.

Medication and pharmacy errors are the subject of many medical malpractice cases, and are often based on negligence theories as they are generally not intentional violations. In order to be held liable for a medication error, the person must first owe a duty of care to the patient. They must have breached this duty of care, and the breach must have been the cause of actual and measurable injuries and/or losses.

Some common medication error injuries include:

  • Vomiting;
  • Nausea;
  • Swelling;
  • Restricted breathing; and/or
  • Irregular heartbeat.

Especially serious medication errors can result in considerable injury, or even death. This is why it is imperative to ensure that you are handling the proper medication before taking it, or before administering it.

A defective product causes injury when it has been designed, manufactured, and/or marketed defectively. Product defects include:

  • Design Defects: These defects are present from the beginning, even before the product is actually manufactured. A company can become liable for a design defect when a foreseeable risk was present during the manufacturing process, but the company chose to continue creating the unsafe product. Many states require the plaintiff to prove that the risk could have been reasonably reduced or entirely avoided by an alternative design.
    • What this means is that the manufacturer could have made the changes at an economically feasible cost, with the product remaining virtually the same as the unsafe product. Products that contain design defects are inherently unsafe, and are only remedied by altering the original design of that product;
  • Manufacturer Defects: These are defects that occur over the course of the manufacturing and/or assembly process. Such defects could result from an unintentional mistake which causes the product to be more dangerous than what the company and the consumer expected. The defining difference between design defects and manufacturer defects would be that design defects are intentional, whereas manufacturer defects are unintentional flaws that occur when the product is made.
    • Manufacturer defects are generally easier to remedy when compared to other types of product defects, as the defect may be remedied by simply changing a material or the assembly process. The most common examples of manufacturing defects would be faulty screws, contaminated medications and food products, and faulty mechanisms; and/or
  • Marketing Defects: Marketing defects are associated with a lack of sufficient instructions or warnings about the product’s use. These are flaws in the way the product is marketed to the consumer, such as improper labeling and inadequate safety warnings. Marketing defects are most commonly associated with a company’s failure to warn consumers about the proper way to use a product. They also involve a hazard that is associated with the use of the product.

In order to prove to the court that the product was defective in some way, the plaintiff must prove one of the above legal theories. This would be in addition to proving that the defect made the product unreasonably dangerous to use.

Are There Any Legal Remedies For Seizure Medication Injuries?

Seizure medication lawsuits frequently involve serious injuries, birth defects, and even wrongful death issues. Wrongful death refers to a lawsuit brought by the family member of a deceased victim, against the person who caused the victim’s death. In order to be considered a wrongful death, the victim must have died because of the wrongful action or negligence of another person or company.

Wrongful death damages generally include:

  • Death related expenses;
  • Loss of consortium;
  • Loss of future earnings or benefits;
  • Loss of inheritance because of the untimely death; and
  • Punitive damages, if the wrongful conduct was intentional.

Other legal claims for seizure medication injuries may result in a monetary damages award for the plaintiff, or for the affected party. These generally cover expenses such as medical costs, hospital bills, and other losses. In cases which involve a product defect, a product recall or a class action suit may also result.

Do I Need An Attorney For Seizure Medication Lawsuits?

If you have experienced injury or a loved one’s death due to seizure medication injury, you will need to consult with an experienced and local personal injury lawyer.

An attorney can inform you of your rights and legal options according to your state’s medical malpractice and personal injury laws. Additionally, an attorney will also be able to represent you in court, as needed, or help you join an existing class action lawsuit.