Archive for the ‘Side Effects’ Category

Hot Footin’

Friday, November 30th, 2018

Kids love to be trendy. In recent years one of the hot trends in kidswear has been shoes that light up. From just simple glitter to multicolored featuring various princess, Batman to Mickey Mouse, these have been features in kids footwear for several year now. But are they a harmless fad?  

Skechers carries over twenty different varieties in light up shoes for kids. But is Skechers, sketchy?  They already paid 40 million dollars in 2012 for making unsubstantiated claims of the health benefits of their “toning shoes.” Now they are facing a class action suit for their light up shoes. If the battery ruptures the acid can cause chemical burns on the feet on the people wearing the shoes. Glitter explosion indeed – they don’t market that brand anymore. Go figure. But they have carried over 100 different light-up varieties for kids.

If your munchkins are running around with light up-shoes – be aware that there are dangers in this product. They need to be inspected periodically to make sure nothing is leaking internally.  Never, ever put light-up shoes in a washing machine or drier.  This is something that the class action suit alleges that Skechers never bothered to tell people.

If your little one’s shoes light up and your child got burned in your purchase of shoes, hot foot in to see us.

Sick of Fashion? Or is Fashion Making you Sick?

Friday, October 12th, 2018


Anyone who has see the original Star Trek knows that wearing a red shirt is hazardous to your health.  But that hazard may not be limited to wearing red.  It could be that a lot of clothing is hazardous to your health.   

JAMA, the Journal of the American Medical Association has found that exposing children to PFCs lessens their immunoresponse and lessen the effects of vaccination. PFCs have also been associated with a range of other health issues, from low birth rate to prostate cancer.

So, what are PFCs?  PFCs are perfluorinated compounds.  They are chemicals that have been around for years.  And they are often used in making clothing stain resistant and/or waterproof.  The chemicals are also found in common products like GoreTex, Teflon, and Scotchguard.

Other than the standard problem of being dangerous, PFCs are also chemically persistent.  That means it takes a long time for them to break down into less hazardous materials.  They may sit in the environment – or in our bodies, for years.  Or they could rest in the clothing that they treat.

And many clothing companies use a lot of these chemicals.  Greenpeace recently composed a report on several sportswear companies using these chemicals.  The report is here if you’d like to read it.  But the gist of it is that the companies are using a lot of these chemicals that can be hazardous to those making the clothes, and possibly those who are wearing the clothes.  And these chemical like to stick around.  Below is a map of where some PFCs have been found in drinking water.

And it’s not just the clothes.  PFCs are becoming a problem in that the chemical contaminant are hanging around in our drinking water.  But by having them in the clothing we wear, that’s literally rubbing it in.

Risky Business

Friday, August 31st, 2018

Thousands of people across the US have bi-polar disorder, schizophrenia and/or depression. Treating these illnesses is serious stuff. Many people have been pharmaceutically treated for these illnesses with Ariprazole (brand name – Abilify) or its successor drug, Brexpriprazole (brand name – Rexulti).

Taking a medicine always involves a risk. For example, these medicines don’t interact well with citrus. But taking a medicine shouldn’t make you more prone to taking risks.

Yet these medicines may drive people to give into their more compulsive urges. That could be gambling, binge eating, sex, or shopping. Yet the first mention of this connection was made in Abilify’s warning label in 2016.  Abilify became available in 2002.

Occasional compulsive behavior is problematic. But if it goes on for fourteen years, that can cause some serious damage.  And that might require some serious legal help. 

If you’ve developed compulsive behavior and were taking one of these drugs, the drug may be a big part of the problem. If that’s the case, come talk with us. It’s a gamble you can’t afford to lose.

Knee Recalls and Kicking Buckets

Friday, August 3rd, 2018

As joints go, the knee is pretty simple. It allows the leg to bend in one direction. Compared to the complexity of directions allowed by the shoulders, hips, and wrists, it does just one thing. So it needs to do it well. And just as your knee has to do it well, so do the replacements when they become necessary. Alas, it doesn’t always happen that way.

Zimmer is the world’s largest manufacturer of artificial knees. And they are having a recall on their Persona Knee implants. Technically the full name is the Zimmer Persona Trabecular Metal Tibial Plate knee implant, but we’re just going to call it the Persona.

The Persona is having issues. It can cause Radiolucent lines – these are large gaps in between the knee replacement component and the bone, which can be problematic.

These problems may include implant failure, pain, swelling, tissue damage and osteolysis (medical for bone damage). This may need to have the knee replacement redone completely – as if having it done the first time wasn’t fun enough.

In theory, a knee implant should last twenty years. Yet many of these have failed within three years. If the complications are serious enough it could be deadly.

If you have had a knee replacement and are having issues talk to your doctor.  And talk to us.

Dicamba – Further Questions

Friday, June 8th, 2018

A couple months back we promised you some interesting questions regarding the dicamba controversy. Here are some interesting controversies this case brings up beyond just the damage to crops. None of them have simple answers.

First, is Monsanto being held to an unfair standard? They make a product. The product comes with instructions. Is the manufacturer liable if the instructions are not adhered to?

How do we know if the product instructions are followed? Who is going to police the actions of farmers to make sure the instructions are followed so not to damage a neighbor’s crops? Did the manufacturer make a product assuming that the instructions would not be followed close enough to prevent damage to neighboring crops?

Next, with ever increasing technology, will farmers be forced to purchase Monsanto’s dicamba resistant products just to be able to bring their crops to market? Where does corporate R&D move from simple one-upmanship to deceptive trade practices?

I promised you questions. I don’t have answers for these just yet. Several of these cases will be headed to court. Those cases might provide some of the answers.

Or, they may just provoke even more questions. We’ll have to see.

Abra Pradaxa

Thursday, May 31st, 2018

It’s amazing what medical science can do. New medicines can sometimes it seem like magic.  But medicines are not magic.  

They need to be thoroughly tested to make sure they are not causing more harm than good.  

Case in point – Pradaxa: In 2010 the FDA approved the drug dabigatran under the brand name Pradaxa. It was approved to treat atrial fibrillaion. In 2014 it was approved for use to treat deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE). But it wasn’t magic. Pradaxa had a serious side effect – internal bleeding. And doctors didn’t find a way to mitigate that condition until 2014. This complication caused bleeding of the kidneys and in the gastrointestinal system. In addition, the drug may have led to dyspepsia, further heart problems, strokes, brain hemorrhages, and deaths associated with those conditions.

Boehringer Ingelheim, Pradaxa’s manufacturer, settled thousands of class action lawsuits in 2014, paying $650 million dollars.

But just settling some lawsuits didn’t make Boehringer’s problems go away like magic. There are still some suits out there, and some that are still being filed.

If you think you are having issues because you were prescribed Pradaxa, contact us right away. If you wait too long your chances of getting justice may vanish like a rabbit into a magician’s hat. Unlike the magic the stage magician uses, the statutes of limitations can make some things vanish forever.


Let’s Not Make Kids Sicker

Tuesday, February 20th, 2018


No one likes to see their child suffer. When you kid is sick you want to comfort them and do anything you can to make them feel better.  And while the flu can be serious, it could be much worse.

But the last thing you want to do as a parent is make it worse.  But inadvertently some parents and drug makers are doing just that.

It’s one thing to have a kick sick with the flu, but psychosis and hallucinations?  Sometimes so bad that poor child wants to jump out a window?  That’s serious stuff.  I wish this wasn’t a  real example.  I’m usually a fan of a good flu pun, but I just didn’t think it appropriate this time.

Unfortunately, these can be some of the side effects of the popular flu medicine Tamiflu (also known as Oseltamivir). These are common enough that the drug has been banned in Japan for use in children for over a decade. The flu can be serious, but would you prefer that to potentially permanent neuropsychiatric problems, brain infections, convulsions, delirium and delusions?

We all want to relieve our children’s suffering. But parents and doctors need to be aware of the side effects that might be attached to the drugs given to relieve the suffering.

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