Legal Helpline NEC
Cows’ milk-based infant formula and fortifiers have been linked to necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) in babies who were born prematurely.
Formula and fortifiers are often recommended to help premature infants gain weight. Formula brands including Similac and Enfamil are marketed as a nutritionally complete alternative to breast milk, and some formulas are designed specifically for premature babies.
However, for babies with underdeveloped digestive systems, use of these formulas can cause a life-threatening condition.
What is NEC?
Necrotizing enterocolitis is a gastrointestinal condition that occurs primarily in premature babies, usually within two to six weeks after birth. In infants with NEC, intestinal tissue becomes inflamed, which causes the tissue to die. If a hole or perforation develops in the intestines, bacteria can leak into the abdomen or bloodstream. NEC can lead to lifelong complications or even death.
Why are premature babies at risk?
Babies born prematurely have weaker immune and digestive systems, which makes it more difficult for them to fight intestinal infections. Intestinal tissue can also become damaged due to diminished flow of oxygen-rich blood to the intestines. When intestinal tissue is damaged, bacteria can enter the abdominal cavity or bloodstream.
How is NEC diagnosed?
Premature infants with NEC may experience changes in vital signs, bloody diarrhea, swollen abdomens, or other symptoms. Healthcare providers may order blood tests, fecal tests, and abdominal X-rays for signs of NEC, including air bubbles around the intestine or abdominal cavity, which can indicate bowel damage or perforation.
Complications of NEC
Infants with NEC are at risk of developing severe complications, such as:
Abdominal infection: Bacteria can enter the abdominal cavity or bloodstream through a hole in the intestinal wall, causing an infection known as peritonitis, which increases the risk for sepsis, a life-threatening blood infection.
Intestinal stricture: As many as 30 percent of infants diagnosed with NEC develop intestinal strictures, or narrowing of the intestines, which may occur a few months after recovery. This condition makes digestion more difficult and may require surgery to fix.
Short bowel (short gut) syndrome: If sections of the small intestine are damaged or destroyed, the child may develop short bowel syndrome, which causes malabsorption, making it more difficult for the body to absorb fluids and nutrients. Children with short bowel syndrome may need lifelong care and tube feedings to thrive.
Failure to grow and developmental delays: NEC may also cause growth failure, poor neurodevelopmental outcomes, and developmental delays, particularly when surgery is required. Infants with these long-term complications will require monitoring of growth and development.
Surgery: About 25 percent of babies with NEC will require surgery to remove dead tissue and to repair holes or perforation. Some children will require an ostomy procedure.
Accountability for Formula Manufacturers
Parents of premature infants who have developed NEC from formula usage have filed claims against manufacturers. The lawsuits allege manufacturers of cows’ milk-based formulas such as Similac and Enfamil failed to warn consumers of serious health risks to premature babies.
Lawsuits also accuse manufacturers of aggressively marketing their formula products as safe and necessary for growth, despite the risk of necrotizing enterocolitis.
If your child was diagnosed with NEC after formula usage, you may be entitled to compensation.
Contact our NEC attorneys for a free case review.
Medtronic MiniMed Legal Helpline℠
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a Class I Recall of Medtronic MiniMed™ 600 Series insulin pumps used for the management of diabetes. Class I recalls are the most serious type of recall issued by the FDA, indicating that the defective products may cause serious injuries or death.
The devices impacted by the recall are:
- Model 630G—Distributed from September 2016 to February 2020
- Model 670G—Distributed May 2015 to December 2020
463,464 devices have been recalled in the U.S. to date
Defect Can Cause Serious Injury or Death
Due to a missing or broken retainer ring, the device can deliver incorrect insulin doses, resulting in serious medical issues, including:
People with Type I diabetes may use the MiniMed insulin pump for insulin delivery to manage their diabetes.
630G Insulin Pump: May be used by people 16 years of age and older
670G Insulin Pump: May be used by people 7 years of age and older
Medtronic informed customers about possible missing or broken clear retainer rings in the 630G and 670G pumps. The purpose of the retainer ring is to lock the insulin cartridge in place in the pump’s reservoir compartment. If the cartridge is not locked in place, too little or too much insulin can be delivered to the user.
Hypoglycemia is a condition when blood sugar or glucose level is lower than normal. This condition can cause unconsciousness, seizures, and if left untreated, coma and even death. If a retainer ring is broken or becomes detached from the insulin pump, a rapid and potentially dangerous infusion of insulin can be delivered to the body, resulting in hypoglycemia.
Hyperglycemia is an excess of sugar or glucose in the bloodstream, which can cause health complications, including diabetic ketoacidosis, a dangerous condition that occurs when excess ketones develop in the blood, which can cause coma or death. If the retainer ring doesn’t lock the reservoir in place, the pump is prevented from pushing insulin into the body. The pump can also stop working if water enters the insulin pump.
If you or a loved one suffered an injury or death after using the MedTronic MiniMed insulin pump, you may be entitled to compensation.
Call Legal Helpline for a free case review, or visit minimedclaims.com for more information
CALL LEGAL HELPLINE AT 1.800.642.5569 FOR A FREE CASE REVIEW.
Paraquat Legal Helpline℠
Highly Toxic Herbicide Linked to Parkinson’s Disease
Paraquat, used by farmers and agricultural workers to control weeds, has been linked to an increased risk of developing Parkinson’s disease, an incurable, progressive disorder of the central nervous system.
Exposure to Paraquat can affect farm and agricultural workers where the herbicide is used.
What is Paraquat?
Paraquat, which has been on the market since the early 1960s, has been banned by 32 countries in the European Union due to its toxicity. However, it is still widely used in the United States.
As far back as 1997, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) expressed concerns that Paraquat may cause Parkinson’s disease. The EPA classifies Paraquat as a restricted use herbicide, which can only be used by commercially-licensed applicators.
Why is Paraquat Dangerous?
Studies show that Paraquat can cause Parkinson’s disease, as well as a number of other serious health issues, including brain damage, permanent lung damage, kidney failure, heart failure, and other severe side effects.
Studies Show Link Between Paraquat and Parkinson’s Disease
- 2009: Study reports 200 percent increase of developing Parkinson’s disease after exposure as a teen or young adult
- 2011: A research study by the National Institute of Health confirms the risk
- 2014: Study related to Environmental Toxins and Parkinson’s disease reveals Paraquat applicators have two times greater risk of developing Parkinson’s than the general population and indirect exposure within 1,600 feet of a home resulted in an up to 75 percent greater risk
Over 60,000 people in the United States are diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease each year. The disease can cause debilitating symptoms that impact everyday movement and mobility.
According to researchers, certain nerve cells in the brain gradually break down or die, causing a loss of production of dopamine. This results in abnormal brain activity, leading to impaired movement and other symptoms.
Signs of Parkinson’s Disease
Parkinson’s disease can progress, getting worse over time. Symptoms varying from person to person. Signs include:
- Tremors of hands, arms, legs, jaw, and face
- Stiffness of arms and legs
- Slowness of movement
- Poor balance and coordination
- Difficulty with speech
Compensation may be available for people who developed Parkinson’s disease after Paraquat exposure. Typical awards include past and future medical bills, past and future lost wages, compensation for permanent disability, pain and suffering, and emotional distress.
Contact our Legal Helpline for a free case evaluation, or visit paraquatlegalservices.com for more information.
CALL LEGAL HELPLINE AT 1.800.642.5569 FOR A FREE CASE REVIEW.
Legal Helpline Lung Cancer Mesothelioma
Asbestos Exposure Can Cause Serious and Deadly Health Issues
Men and women who served in the military and in over 75 other occupations may suffer lifelong, debilitating, and deadly injuries due to asbestos exposure.
If you or a loved one has contracted lung cancer or mesothelioma from asbestos exposure, the legal system provides a path to receive compensation, regardless of smoking history.
Asbestos-Related Health Issues
Exposure to asbestos can cause numerous cancers and non-cancerous conditions decades following exposure.
- Mesothelioma: A rare and incurable cancer that develops in the lining of the lungs or abdomen
- Lung Cancer: Cancer that develops in the lining of the lungs
- Ovarian Cancer
- Laryngeal Cancer
Non-Cancerous Conditions include:
Asbestosis: Inflammation and scarring of the lung tissue that prevents the lungs from expanding and relaxing normally
Who is at Risk of Exposure?
The primary group of workers exposed to asbestos include those worked in:
- Manufacturing of insulation, roofing, and building materials
- Automotive repair
- Oil refineries
- Power plants
- Steel manufacturing
Additional workers at risk include those involved in the repair, renovation, removal, or maintenance of asbestos-containing products installed decades ago.
Serving Our Country—Exposed to Asbestos
Following 9/11, approximately 40,000 rescue and recovery workers were exposed to tens of thousands of tons of asbestos dust and other toxic pollutants. These workers included firefighters, paramedics, police, and thousands of construction, utility, and public sector workers.
Justice for Asbestos Victims
Many companies that produced, distributed, or used asbestos products knew about the dangers and failed to warn their employees or the public. Because of this, military veterans, employees, and others exposed to asbestos at work—including those exposed to second-hand asbestos—can file a legal action for compensation, even if they smoked.
Two Types of Asbestos Claims
Personal Injury Lawsuits
Filed by a victim against the company or companies likely responsible for their asbestos exposure for specific damages due to illness, treatment, lost income, pain and suffering, and related costs
Wrongful Death Lawsuits
Filed by a surviving member of the victim’s family for specific damages related to the death of the individual, as well as compensation for outstanding medical bills, funeral expenses, lost income potential, loss of consortium, and related costs
If you or a loved one was diagnosed with mesothelioma, lung cancer or asbestosis, contact Legal Helpline for a free case review.
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Mesothelioma, Asbestosis or Lung Cancer call the number on your screen now as you may be entitled to significant compensation for your injuries even if you smoked.
CALL LEGAL HELPLINE AT 1.800.642.5569 FOR A FREE CASE REVIEW.
Legal Helpline Hernia Mesh
Hernia repair surgery is one of the most commonly performed surgeries each year. Commonly, surgeons use mesh to provide additional support to weakened or damaged tissue. The majority of mesh used is synthetic or made from animal tissue.
However, this mesh is often associated with numerous complications, including infection, wound reopening, chronic pain, bowel obstruction, and required revision or repair surgery.
What is a Hernia?
A hernia occurs when an organ or fatty tissue squeezes through a gap in the muscular wall or a weak spot in the surrounding muscle or connective tissue, called fascia. Hernias often occur in the abdominal wall, as well as the groin.
Surgery is the only option to repair hernias. Because hernias have a high rate of recurrence, surgeons may use surgical mesh to fortify the weakened or damaged tissue, which may or may not be successful.
Adverse Events Following Hernia Repair with Mesh
Repair with surgical mesh may result in various complications, known as adverse events. The most common adverse events include:
- Hernia recurrence
- Bowel obstruction
Additional potential adverse events include mesh migration and shrinkage. Complications may require surgical repair or revision.
Fast-Track Approval Process
Hernia mesh manufacturers used the FDA’s 510(k) clearance process to fast-track approvals of devices that are similar to existing devices on the market without pre-market approval. As a result, thousands of defective surgical hernia mesh products have been implanted in patients, leading to serious complications, and required removal or revision surgeries.
Hernia Mesh Recalls and Market Withdrawals
From 2010 through February 2019, hernia mesh manufacturers recalled a substantial number of devices. Most of these recalls were classified as Type II recalls by the FDA, meaning the device can cause a temporary or medically-reversible complication.
Johnson & Johnson’s Ethicon unit issued a market withdrawal of surgical mesh devices. C.R. Bard and Atrium have also recalled mesh devices.
The FDA classified C.R. Bard’s Kugel Patch as a Class I recall, the most serious type of recall, meaning the recalled product could cause serious health consequences or death.
Hernia Mesh Lawsuits
Several current lawsuits have been consolidated in multidistrict litigations (MDLs), including Ethicon, Atrium, and C.R, Bard. If you or a loved one suffered hernia mesh injuries, contact Legal Helpline for a free case review, or visit herniameshlegalgroup.com for more information.
Legal Helpline Zantac
In April 2020, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requested the removal of all ranitidine products from the market. The request included all prescription and over-the-counter ranitidine drugs due to an ongoing investigation of a carcinogenic contaminant known as N-Nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA). Ranitidine is commonly known by the brand name Zantac.
The FDA has determined that NDMA in some ranitidine products increases over time and when stored at higher than room temperatures, exposing consumers to unacceptable levels of NDMA, far greater than levels the agency considers to be safe.
NDMA is a known carcinogen, which can increase the risk of:
- Gastric cancer
- Liver cancer
- Colorectal cancer
- Bladder cancer
- Esophageal cancer
- Lung cancer
- Pancreatic cancer
What is Zantac?
Ranitidine (Zantac) is an H2-receptor blocker drug commonly used to treat conditions that cause excess stomach acid. It is available in over the counter and prescription forms. Zantac is used to relieve the symptoms of:
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), also known as heartburn
- Gastritis (inflamed stomach) caused by inflammation, excess stomach acid, and peptic ulcers
September 2019: The independent testing laboratory Valisure discoved NDMA during routine testing of Zantac and alerts the FDA about concerning amounts of the carcinogen. The agency alerted the public without taking action.
Novartis AG stopped distribution of its generic ranitidine, and Canada requested all manufacturers stop distributing ranitidine products.
CVS, Walgreens, Rite Aid, and other major U.S. retailers removed ranitidine products from their shelves.
A class action lawsuit was filed in the Northern District Court of California, accusing Sanofi Aventis, the manufacturer of Zantac, of failing to warn consumers of the dangerous levels of NDMA in their product.
The FDA confirmed “unacceptable levels” of NDMA. The agency requested manufacturers stop sales. By the end of the month, many distributors had recalled products or stopped sales. Sanofi, the manufacturer of over-the-counter Zantac issued a voluntary recall.
The FDA requested the removal of all ranitidine (Zantac) products from the U.S. market after new studies demonstrated risks to public health. Studies demonstrated NDMA levels could increase the longer products are on the shelf, becoming more carcinogenic with time.
If you or a loved one has been harmed due to the use of Zantac, you may be entitled to significant compensation for your injuries.
Contact Legal Helpline for a free case review, or visit zantaclegalservices.com for more information.
CALL LEGAL HELPLINE AT 1.800.642.5569 FOR A FREE CASE REVIEW.
Recent disclosures from company insiders reveal social media companies used devious algorithms to attract vulnerable teens, exposing them to bullying and harmful communications. Teens are also being targeted and sexually exploited by predators through encrypted messaging and live streaming services.
Problems Associated with Teen Social Media Use
According to mental health experts, the increase in social media use has resulted in a 50 percent increase in teen suicide over the past decade. Other problems associated with social media use include:
- Eating and sleeping disorders
- Sexual abuse
- Attempted suicide
Lawmakers Question Social Media Companies
In the fall of 2021, members of the Senate’s consumer protection subcommittee held hearings to question social media executives. Lawmakers want the companies to take more actions to protect children online.
In October 2021, a whistleblower who had worked at Facebook (now Meta) testified before the Senate about the company’s impact on kids. The whistleblower had released tens of thousands of pages of internal research and documents about the social media giant’s operations.
Executives from TikTok, Snapchat, and YouTube also faced questioning and accusations in a separate hearing. Executives from all three organizations promised to share internal research on the effects of their products on youth.
In December 2021, the head of Meta’s Instagram appeared before the Senate Commerce subcommittee to address questions whether the app is harmful to children’s health. Instagram rolled out safety features prior to the hearing.
Wall Street Journal Report
In September 2021, The Wall Street Journal ran an article “Facebook Knows Instagram Is Toxic for Teen Girls, Company Documents Show.” It was based on documents provided by the Facebook whistleblower that suggest Facebook (Meta) knew its Instagram platform was “toxic” for teenaged users and that its algorithms could direct them to content that worsened their body image.
Bill in Senate Committee Would Expand Safeguards
In September 2021, Senators Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), members of the Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, along with Congressional Rep. Kathy Castor (FL-14) reintroduced the Kids Internet Design and Safety (KIDS) Act to stop online practices such as manipulative marketing, amplification of harmful content, and damaging design features which threaten young people.
If your child has suffered a mental health crisis, eating disorder, attempted or completed suicide, or was sexually exploited through their social media use, call Legal Helpline for a free case review, or visit socialmediavictims.org for more information.