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Expert Witness Expectations in Opioid Lawsuits

Opioids are the common thread in lawsuits where someone brings a case about physical harm due to medication such as pain relievers and pills. Litigation into these matters is frequently complicated and difficult to understand without the use of an expert witness, and these professionals present testimony about the drugs and their effects.

Over 25 states have joined together to fight against opioid drugs. These substances and pills caused significant damage through physical harm, psychological conditions and dependency. Many that initiate treatment through a doctor become addicted or dependent to the point they may steal or buy the drugs from others. The epidemic of medicate before understanding the true problem has led to a nation of drug taking citizens. Opioids are a common way to help alleviate pain. However, the damage these pills cause is sometimes extensive. There are frequent lawsuits started against the drug companies or the doctors that prescribe them when harm occurs with the patients in the process.

Opioid Litigation Escalation

With the number of lawsuits pending increasing each year, the opioid litigation problem is escalating. It is important that each plaintiff find a
lawyer to take on the case. Because of the complexities that exist in opioid claims, expert witnesses are necessary. They are able to detail and explain evidence, provide information about the drugs and connect the appropriate party to the injury. However, these processes take time. Discovering which doctor, company or agency is responsible for the damage may necessitate an investigation. Gathering evidence could take months, and the lawsuit could last years.

Lasting Effects of Opioids

As litigation incidents escalate with opioids, the lasting effects of these drugs are becoming more apparent. Some patients are suffering addictive after effects. Others harmed through use must seek medical attention. These injuries may include organ damage, other healthcare conditions and illness. Severe allergic reaction or bad reactions with a combination of drugs may arise through opioid prescription. For those that buy or trade to receive these pills, other adverse effects occur. However, the prescriptions may lead to substance abuse problems. This is when a lawsuit occurs that may require compensation for the life-altering damage caused.

Some other lasting effects lead to death. This is frequently the end result of overdoses and substance abuse. These fatal incidents occur with both the illegal opioids such as heroine as well as those purchased through a prescription. Some abuses of the drugs happen through mixing pills and the illegal types together. The cocktails may lead to fatal complications. The expert witness hired for these claims may need to explain the detrimental effects that harm the body or mind. If the drug has effects that cause suicidal thoughts, some patients may end up killing themselves.

The Lawsuit and Expert Testimony in Opioids

Litigation generally starts have injuries sustained affect the individual or family. The physical and psychological effects of addiction on the patient are not primary concerns. However, they may become a section of the lawsuit when suing for damages. The expert must explain the physical and mental changes the person undergoes when taking certain opioids. However, the issues relate to a wide variety of these drugs. Substances such as Oxycodone and Morphine do provide pain relief. However, they may lead the patient to addiction or internal health complications. The expert describes these issues. He or she may also analyses evidence and the defending pharmaceutical company.

Class Action and Proceeding Through

With the increase of litigation based on effects of opioids, the expert may become part of a larger lawsuit. When the complications from these drugs are part of a larger concern, numerous patients may band together against one pharmaceutical company. The primary lawyer or group of legal representatives may hire multiple experts to detail various issues with these substances. Some may explain addiction, while others involve the courtroom in medical problems. The experts will proceed through the case and supply the judge or jury with relevant testimony on behalf of the plaintiffs.

When necessary, an expert witness may need visual aids. These could involve the specific plaintiff and his or her experience with the opioids. Withdrawal or other complications explained in these situations are necessary. Migraines, chest congestion, illness and organ shutdown may all occur with other problems from opioids. Allergic reactions could lead to death. Then, compensation is important so family or the victim may recover from the incident or pay for additional treatment to become whole after the event. Details from the expert witness provide necessary information to deliberate on the case.

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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer.

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