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Friday, May 28, 2010

Dozens of Drug Factories Received FDA Warnings Since 2009

Since the start of 2009, at least 43 drug factories producing pharmaceutical products sold in the United States have received FDA warnings for failing to correct problems which may place consumers' health at risk.

Some of the violations resulting in warning letters from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) include:

  • Using equipment and ingredients contaminated with bacteria or insects
  • Failing to do proper testing to ensure drug strength and purity
  • Ignoring consumer complaints that products made them ill

The warning letters issued by the FDA only dealt with the most egregious violations found at factory inspections. However, a substantial number of factories which did not receive warning letters were cited for lesser violations. According to the FDA, between 2002 and 2006, more than 50% of domestic plants and 62% of foreign plants supplying drugs to the U.S. received violations which required correction but were not egregious enough to warrant a warning letter.

The following plants received warning letters from the FDA for egregious violations:

  • Teva Pharmaceuticals received a warning letter for failing to properly test propofol, used by anesthesiologists during surgeries, after 41 patients developed post-operative fever. Teva recalled propofol due to the bacterial contamination.
  • Hospira, another company which manufactures propofol, recalled the drug due to steel particle contamination.
  • Balchem, an Illinois plant manufacturing calcium carbonate used in antacids and menopause drugs, received a warning after they released products to the public which were made with water contaminated with coliform bacteria. Balchem new the products contained contaminated water at the time of their release.
  • A Massachusetts plant run by Braintree Laboratories received a warning for failing to investigate 21 complaints of bug parts or spiders in several of their products.
  • A Puerto Rico plant manufacturing products for Procter & Gamble received a warning letter after FDA inspectors found bacteria on equipment at the plant. The company was also cited for failing to investigate 198 complaints regarding health issues linked to a Vicks Sinex product manufactured at the plant.

If you have suffered an injury after taking a contaminated or defective drug, the pharmaceutical injury attorneys at The Cochran Firm can help you receive compensation for your damages.

Please contact our experienced pharmaceutical injury attorneys today to schedule your free initial consultation. The Cochran Firm serves clients nationwide.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:30 AM

Thursday, May 27, 2010

FDA Investigating Reports of Side Effects of Tylenol

According to the Food and Drug Administration, there have been at least 775 reports of serious side effects from drugs recalled by McNeil, a division of Johnson & Johnson. The drugs include Tylenol, Motrin, and Benadryl, but the reports do not only include the recalled drugs, recalled from the beginning of 2008 to April 30 of this year.

Many of these side effects lead to the deaths of consumers, including 30 from the recalls beginning in 2008, as well as seven deaths since May 1, 2010. This was the day McNeil recalled 50 versions of the children's brands of their medication due to quality and safety concerns.

The side effects are also officially known as "adverse events" and are consumer complaints of a serious side effect that is associated with the use of a medical product. Adverse events include an array of health complications, disability, hospitalization, and death.

This is the fourth recall of McNeil products in seven months. The others include:

  • Recall of five lots of Tylenol Arthritis Pain 100 count with EZ-open cap in November 2009 for unusual odor leading to nausea, stomach pain, diarrhea, and vomiting
  • In December 2009, the Tylenol Arthritis Pain caplet 100 count recall was expanded to include all lots
  • An unknown number of Tylenol , Motrin, and other over-the-counter drugs were recalled in January 2010 after consumers complained of feeling sick due to an odor

The recall of the children's drugs was done as a precautionary measure, according to McNeil.

The FDA issued a 17-page inspection report earlier this month detailing 20 different violations at the Fort Washington plant. The violations were described as "shocking" by a professor of pharmaceutical manufacturing at Temple University. He said it was the worst inspection report he'd ever seen and that the FDA found problems with almost every single system at the Pennsylvania plant.

If you or a loved one has become sick after taking Tylenol, Motrin, or Benadryl anywhere in the nation, please contact the experienced pharmaceutical injury attorneys at the Cochran Firm for an initial consultation.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 8:51 AM

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Ohio Ruling Could Reduce Liability Damages

As medical costs have been rising over recent years, so have medical malpractice awards and so have premiums for physicians’ medical malpractice insurance. Some say the awards have risen disproportionately and some physicians say that their premiums are becoming unaffordable. Some are even moving to areas where premiums are lower or embarking on new careers in other fields. However, plaintiffs’ attorneys are happy with increased awards.

In the context of all this disagreement, the Ohio Supreme Court has recently provided some support for physicians. The case involved was filed by one Richard Jaques in 2005 after he was hurt in an automobile accident. Court records show that the other driver, one Patricia Manton, admitted liability for having collided with Jaques’ vehicle.

How “Write-Offs” Affect the Situation

As the plaintiff, Jaques submitted his medical bills which totaled $21,875. Manton moved to submit information showing that Jaques’ health insurance company had not paid that amount, but had only paid $7,484 for treatments.

The difference in these amounts arises from the situation where an insurance company has a contract with a health provider to pay certain amounts for specific procedures, regardless of what it costs the provider to perform those procedures. An uninsured patient is billed a higher amount determined by the provider.

In this case, the difference between $21,875 and $7,484 was written off. However, the court would not accept Manton’s information and the jury awarded Jaques a sum of $25,000 in total damages. That was in 2008.

Manton appealed and the Ohio Supreme Court has now ruled that since nobody paid the written-off amount and Jaques’ actual costs were lower than what the jury awarded, the defendant may submit evidence giving a reasonable value for the plaintiff’s damages.

Justice Terrence O’Donnell wrote:

"Write-offs are amounts not paid by third parties or anyone else, so permitting introduction of evidence of them allows the fact finder to determine the actual amount of medical expenses incurred as a result of the defendant's conduct. This result supports the traditional goal of compensatory damages -- making the plaintiff whole."

The Ohio Supreme Court sent this case back to be re-tried.

If you have been injured by someone else’s negligence, and would like to get some legal questions answered, please call or email us for a free case review.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 1:29 PM

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Cochran Firm Office in New Orleans, Louisiana Fights Oil Spill

One of the core values of The Cochran Firm is that we stand for our communities and fight for those who have been hurt as a result of the negligence of others, including multinational corporations like BP. Now, as the Gulf Oil Spill continues to grow, we at the New Orleans, Louisiana office of The Cochran Firm are bending our efforts to help our fellow Louisianans and protect the environment of Louisiana.

Of course, we are talking to people who have been affected by the spill and counseling them on their legal options. The Cochran Firm has a long track record of environmental litigation. If you would like to learn more about our legal focus on this disaster, please see the website of The Environmental Law Group, a combined effort of ten of the nation's largest law firms, including The Cochran Firm.

In addition, we are coordinating donation efforts to gather Dawn dish soap for the cleanup efforts. Dish soap is used at about 1/100th strength to clean wildlife. During the first week of donations, we collected over 28 gallons of dish soap. Special Thanks to Megan Lenore who coordinated this effort.

Finally, we are also trying hard to spread updated and accurate information about the Deep Horizon disaster and its legal consequences to our neighbors in New Orleans and the rest of the Gulf Coast using our Facebook page. We have selected the articles based on their relevance to the area and where applicable provide legal commentary.

The Cochran Firm is not just lawyers, we are people committed to protecting our community and fighting for justice. If you, your loved ones, or your community has been hurt and you need a powerful ally, we are prepared to stand with you, against even multinational corporations or the government that may have contributed to your suffering. Contact us today for a free consultation and learn how we may be able to help you.

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posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 10:12 AM

Automobile Accidents and Texting in Washington, D.C.

Cell phone use while driving is a high risk behavior whether you are talking or texting. Talking or texting drivers are four times more likely to be involved in an automobile accident than someone who is not. The danger of texting and talking on a cell phone while driving is well documented.

A report published in the New York Times reveals drivers generally ignore the research about the dangers of texting and talking while driving and continue this risky behavior. Most drivers overestimate their ability to multi-task with disastrous results. There is no doubt that drivers using cell phones are putting themselves and others at risk.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that over 80% of automobile drivers admit to texting or talking on a cell phone while driving. A cell phone using driver can be charged with negligence if they were engaged in texting or talking when an accident occurs. An automobile accident attorney who has experience with cell phone related automobile accident claims can assist you as the laws governing cell phone use while driving change daily.

If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident caused by a texting or talking cell phone using driver, please contact the Washington, D.C. office of The Cochran Firm today to learn about your legal rights.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:50 AM

Monday, May 24, 2010

Plane Crash in India Under Investigation

Air India Flight IX-812 overshot the runway at Mangalore International Airport, hit a wall and crashed Saturday morning according an India civil aviation regulator; the aviation accident killed 158 people. Eight people survived the crash of the Boeing 737 passenger jet, which took off from Dubai. Neither the pilot nor the co-pilot reported any problems before the crash landing.

According to the Indian government, families would receive approximately $4,260 US dollars for each deceased passenger or just over $1,000 for each injured passenger. Air India announced that victims’ families would receive just over $21,000 for each deceased victim over the age of twelve and about half that much for those under the age of twelve.

The NTSB (National Transportation Safety Board) is scheduled to arrive in India on Tuesday, May 25th to begin its investigation. India has not suffered an aviation disaster since 2000, when a jet crashed while trying to land in Patna, killing 60 people aboard.

If you have lost a loved one in a plane accident, please contact an experienced aviation accident attorney from The Cochran Firm today to schedule a confidential, no-cost consultation.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:56 AM

Dangerous Denture Cream Adhesive in Tuskegee, Alabama

Researchers at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center published their findings in "Neurology" in 2008 of a number of patients who used denture cream adhesive who developed neuropathy and other neurological symptoms consistent with copper depletion and zinc poisoning. These symptoms included numbness or tingling of the extremities, loss of mobility of the legs, feet, arms and hands, unexplained pain in the extremities, and poor balance. The symptoms appeared more severe in people who used large amounts of the denture cream adhesive for poorly fitting dentures.

Denture cream adhesives, such as Fixodent, Poligrip and Super Poligrip contain the mineral zinc. Large amounts of zinc can cause zinc poisoning and copper depletion if used over a long period of time.

Many of the over 35 million American who wear dentures are totally unaware of the link between using denture cream adhesive and the reported neurological symptoms found in many users.

Denture cream adhesive manufacturers should be held accountable for failing to warn consumers of the possible dangers of their product and failing to market a product that is safe.

If you or someone you care about has used denture cream adhesive and are exhibiting the neurological symptoms associated with zinc poisoning and copper depletion, please contact the Tuskegee, Alabama office of The Cochran Firm today to consult with an experienced attorney at no cost to you, to protect your legal rights and hold the manufacturers responsible for your injuries.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:48 AM

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Retained Foreign Bodies after Surgery in San Jose, California

The actual incidence of surgeons mistakenly leaving foreign bodies inside the patient is unknown, but estimates are as frequently as one out of every one hundred patients to one out of every five thousand patients. Whatever the true number, it happens too frequently and is a serious problem.

Surgical teams have been known to leave surgical sponges, pins, blades, clips, gauze, cotton and other medical instruments in the patient's body due to outright recklessness and negligence. When left in the human body retained foreign bodies damage tissues, blood vessels and organs and can cause life-threatening infections and damage that can in turn lead to life-long disability or even death.

The physicians, nurses, anesthesiologists and the entire surgical team can be held liable for medical malpractice and negligence if this type of preventable occurrence takes place. Many times this situation goes unresolved for a period of time while the patient's condition continues to deteriorate for what appears to be unknown reasons.

If you or someone you love has been injured or died because of a foreign body left in the surgical site, or even if you only suspect this is what happened, please contact the San Jose, California office of The Cochran Firm today to speak with an experienced medical malpractice attorney at no cost to you to help you decide what course of action you should take to hold the responsible parties legally liable.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:47 AM

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Medical Malpractice-Dialysis Errors in San Francisco

Kidney disease kills fourteen people out of one hundred thousand annually, making it the ninth leading cause of death in the United States. Medicare alone spends fourteen billion dollars each year to treat End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD). Several hundred thousand Americans undergo kidney dialysis treatment every year.

Treatment for renal failure has risks, and patients must be educated to minimize these risks and protect themselves. People die or are unnecessarily injured every day in this country due to medical errors perpetrated during their kidney dialysis treatments.

Kidney dialysis medical malpractice can include but not be limited to, medication errors, patient falls, dialyzer errors, vascular access injuries, excess blood loss and prolonged bleeding, dialysis machine leaks, malfunctioning machine alarms, failure to clear dialysis machines of cleaning solutions and failure to appropriately monitor blood pressure. There are documented kidney dialysis errors in the thousands each year in this country.

If you are a person on kidney dialysis treatments and you did not receive adequate and proper care and treatment and sustained a serious injury, you should contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney familiar with kidney dialysis errors.

If you live in the San Francisco area and you would like to speak to an attorney who is an expert in the field of kidney dialysis errors, please contact the San Francisco office of The Cochran Firm today to schedule a no cost to you confidential consultation.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:45 AM

Friday, May 21, 2010

Viagra Linked to Hearing Loss

Viagra is often called a wonder drug by many men suffering from erectile dysfunction. While it has given many middle-age men the ability to once again enjoy having sex, it also comes with an array of harmful side effects that may adversely impact your life in serious ways. There is now a new side effect to add to this list – hearing loss.

This week, the Archives of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery published research linking long-term hearing loss to the consumption of Viagra. The study was conducted at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and examined 11,525 men. According to the study, men who self-reported hearing problems were two times as likely to have used Viagra as men who did not self-report hearing loss. The association with long-term hearing loss was stronger for Viagra than for other erectile dysfunction medications such as Cialis and Levitra.

Other harmful side effects linked to Viagra include:

· Headaches

· Facial flushing

· Upset stomach

· Erections lasting longer than four hours

However, the most serious side effect associated with Viagra has been a sudden loss of vision. Now, with the discovery that Viagra may result in hearing loss, it is possible for the drug to impair two of your five senses. This is a very serious risk for an erectile dysfunction medication.

If you have suffered hearing loss or vision loss from taking Viagra, the defective product attorneys at the Cochran Firm can help you receive compensation for your damages.

Please contact our defective product lawyers today to schedule your free initial consultation. The Cochran Firm has offices nationwide.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 9:00 AM

Medical Malpractice in Sacramento, California

Thousands of Americans become victims of medical malpractice and negligence every day in this country. It is estimated that over 250,000 people die every year across the country from the consequences of medical malpractice such as botched surgeries, misdiagnoses, delayed diagnoses, medication errors and infections contracted in hospitals and other healthcare facilities.

Although not all errors committed in a medical setting rise to the level of medical malpractice and negligence, it is vitally important to know that the laws pertaining to medical malpractice are there to protect you in case you do become a victim.

The five diseases or medical conditions most connected to allegations of medical malpractice are breast cancer, lung cancer, colorectal cancer, myocardial infarction (heart attack) and appendicitis. Delayed diagnosis or misdiagnosis of these diseases or conditions may result in a delay in the appropriate treatment or no treatment at all which of course can result in death.

Financial compensation in the case of medical malpractice or negligence may include payment for pain and suffering, medical expenses, loss of income and future earning potential and in the event of a death, the survivors are also entitled to compensation.

If you live in Sacramento, California and you or someone you care about has been the victim of medical malpractice and negligence, please contact the experienced medical malpractice attorneys at The Cochran Firm today.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:44 AM

Defective Chinese Drywall in Raleigh, North Carolina

When a dangerous or defective product causes damage, serious injury or death the manufacturer, distributor, designer or installer can be held legally responsible under product liability laws.

Does your new home smell of rotten eggs? Have you had to have frequent repairs of your heating and cooling systems, wiring and piping? Does your family suffer from irritated eyes, breathing problems, nose bleeds and headaches? Do your symptoms disappear when you are away from your home for any length of time? If the answer is yes to any or all of these questions you may be living with defective Chinese drywall.

Thousands of homeowners have reported these problems in new homes built with drywall imported from China. Many home builders used imported Chinese drywall during a shortage of United States- made drywall between the years of 2004 and 2006. Reports are that this Chinese drywall was kept on barges at sea for many months waiting to be allowed to enter this country, and the drywall was exposed to high humidity which has caused the toxicity problems to surface.

Many people living in homes with imported Chinese drywall have experienced various health problems as a result of the noxious fumes leaking out into their homes.

If your dream home has instead become a nightmare due to the use of imported Chinese drywall, we encourage you to contact the Raleigh/Durham, North Carolina office of The Cochran Firm today to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced product liability attorneys at no cost to you to protect your legal rights and hold those responsible for this outrage accountable.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:42 AM

Mesothelioma in Philadelphia

Exposure to asbestos fiber in the workplace is a major factor in the incidence of mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is a form of cancer that affects the mesothelium, a thin layer of cells that lines the internal organs of the human body.

Pleural mesothelioma affects the lining of the lungs and accounts for 70% of the diagnosed cases of the disease. The dust created from working with the asbestos fiber settles in the lungs and abdomen if inhaled or swallowed. The irritation caused by the dust to these organs is thought to lead to a diagnosis of mesothelioma.

Workers who may encounter asbestos fiber on the job are widespread throughout the workforce and may be found in mining operations, factories, ship building installations, insulating manufacturing, construction sites, automobile repair, steel mills, oil refineries and cement plants. The risk of contracting mesothelioma increases when you are exposed to high levels of asbestos for long periods of time.

If you or someone you know has been employed in one of these fields and has been experiencing chest or back pain, coughing, unexplained weight loss, fatigue, shortness of breath, abdominal pain or difficulty breathing, you may be experiencing the symptoms of exposure to asbestos fiber and mesothelioma.

By contacting the experienced mesothelioma attorneys at the Philadelphia office of The Cochran Firm today you can discuss your legal rights and learn whether you are entitled to financial compensation.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:40 AM

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Cadmium Tainted Jewelry Pulled from Wal-Mart Stores

Wal-Mart has announced it is pulling one of the lines of Miley Cyrus brand bracelets and necklaces from its stores after tests found the jewelry contained the toxic metal cadmium. The line of jewelry was made exclusively for Wal-Mart and has reportedly been on the shelves since last December. The items were made in China.

Wal-Mart was told of the cadmium-laced jewelry back in February when Associated Press conducted a round of testing on unrelated bracelets, but continued to sell the items to consumers. The company complained that it would be too difficult to test products already on its shelves.

Cadmium is a known carcinogen and long-term exposure can lead to kidney failure, hinder brain development in children, and cause bone softening. Cadmium in jewelry is reportedly safe if worn, but can be dangerous if children bite or suck on the pieces. However, the Miley Cyrus jewelry is not intended for young children, according to Wal-Mart.

Earlier Investigation

The first round of testing was the result of a report that was issued last January, which stated that Wal-Mart and other big chains were selling children's jewelry that were around 90 percent Cadmium by weight. That investigation used an Ashland University chemistry professor to test 13 items purchased at Wal-Mart.

Associated Press then launched another round of testing last month to see which items were still on Wal-Mart shelves around the country. In the eight states where AP reporters looked, all but one of the 13 items were still on shelves.

The importer of the bracelets, Cousin Corp. of America, claims they persuaded one of the Chinese factories it works with to stop using cadmium in its products.

Safety Obligation of Wal-Mart

Wal-Mart and other large chains have an obligation to make sure their products do not harm their consumers. We trust these stores to offer safe products, not products that may give our children cancer or hinder learning. No matter how difficult it is to remove defective products from the shelves, Wal-Mart has a moral responsibility to remove these and any other unsafe products.

If you or a loved one has been injured or made ill by a defective product, please contact the experienced product liability attorneys at the Cochran Firm today. We serve clients nationwide.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 8:50 AM

Landlord-Tenant Disputes in Norfolk, Virginia

If you are a renter dealing with issues of broken plumbing or heating and cooling systems, and unsafe conditions in your apartment building or rented house being ignored by your landlord, you are not alone in your efforts to be heard.

Problems like these are the responsibility of the landlord who must make the necessary repairs to meet local housing codes and to ensure the premises are safe. If you feel you are being ignored you can take action. For instance, did you know you have the legal right to put your rent money into an escrow account instead of handing it over to the landlord, until that time your problem is addressed? This is just one course of action available to you in a landlord-tenant dispute.

Many tenants do not know they have certain legal rights that protect them from being exploited by landlords. It is important that you know what your legal rights are. If you have tried to resolve your problems with your landlord with no results, consulting an attorney may be the best course of action for you to take in settling your dispute.

If you live in the Norfolk area and you are frustrated because you have tried to solve a dispute with your landlord and cannot seem to find a resolution, please contact the experienced landlord-tenant dispute attorneys at the Norfolk, Virginia office of The Cochran Firm today to schedule a confidential consultation at no cost to you to learn just what can be done to help you solve your problems.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:38 AM

Toxic Torts in New York City

Toxic torts are legal cases that refer to injuries caused by the exposure to toxic substances because of the negligence of chemical manufacturers, distributors or users of toxic chemicals. In a toxic tort, the people who were injured by exposure to the toxic substance are the plaintiffs and the people whose negligence caused the exposure and injuries are the defendants.

Some toxic substances involved in recent toxic tort cases include asbestos, pesticides, toxic waste products, paints, benzene and fertilizers. These toxic substances are found in the environment, home and workplace.

Diseases that can occur after exposure to toxic substances include, but are not limited to mesothelioma, silicosis, leukemia, lung diseases, aplastic anemia and Hodgkins disease.

Despite the difficulty of proving responsibility in a toxic tort case, the effort may gain you compensation for your pain and suffering, disabilities, medical expenses, emotional stress, loss of enjoyment of life or the death of a loved one. Proving responsibility can also result in protection for your community by forcing the polluters to stop their damaging activities and punishing them with large monetary losses.

If you know or suspect a toxic exposure in your environment, home or workplace has caused serious injury to you or someone you know, please contact the experienced toxic tort attorneys at The Cochran Firm in New York City today.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:36 AM

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Defective Weight Loss Drugs in New Orleans

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is reviewing safety information regarding adverse liver-related problems with the use of orlistat, which is marketed in the United States as Xenical, manufactured by Roche and Alli from GlaxoSmithKline. Xenical is available by prescription only while Alli is available over-the-counter.

There have been over thirty reports of serious liver damage and six cases of liver failure in patients using orlistat. The most common side effects reported were jaundice, weakness and abdominal pain. Other symptoms noted were nausea, vomiting, light-colored stools, itching, loss of appetite and brown urine. Patients have been advised to consult with their healthcare professionals if they are experiencing any of these symptoms with their use of orlistat.

Xenical and Alli have generated nearly $200 million in sales since 1999. Millions of people have taken Xenical and Alli believing the two were safe products that would help them lose unwanted weight, but are now finding out they may have been exposed to serious and perhaps life-threatening liver damage by these potentially defective weight loss drugs.

If you believe you or someone you care about has suffered liver damage from the use of Xenical or Alli, you may be entitled to financial compensation for your injury, medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering. Please contact the New Orleans office of The Cochran Firm today to schedule a confidential consultation to protect your legal rights.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:34 AM

Cell phone Use, Texting and Car Accidents in Mobile, Alabama

The dangers of cell phone use while driving are well documented, but that has not stopped the growth of this practice which is evident to everyone on the nation’s roadways on a daily basis.

Most Americans ignore the dangers of this risky behavior and are increasingly guilty of using cell phones, navigational devices and even laptops to turn their vehicles into mobile offices, chat rooms and entertainment venues.

Distracted drivers are responsible for the majority of automobile accidents and are four times more likely to cause an accident than other drivers. The likelihood a distracted driver will have an accident equals that of a driver with a .08 percent blood alcohol level.

A major factor is the drivers misconception they are capable of multi-tasking at a greater level than is actually true. There are limits to how much the brain can actually process at one time. When something unexpected takes place when you are behind the wheel, the human mind cannot process the unexpected move in time to react safely.

Only five states ban hand-held cell phones and only fourteen states ban texting while driving. There is no question drivers using cell phones behind the wheel are putting themselves and you and your loved ones at risk.

If you have been the victim of a cell phone using driver and you live in the Mobile, Alabama area, please contact The Cochran Firm today to learn how to protect your legal rights and obtain the financial compensation you may be entitled to.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:33 AM

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Potential Toxic Tort: Pesticide in Children Linked to ADHD Diagnosis

Exposure to high levels of certain pesticides has long been known to result in neurologic damage to children in rural and farming communities, and has been the subject of numerous toxic tort lawsuits. However, yesterday researchers released a study showing the problem is likely much larger than previously suspected. The study, conducted by researchers at the University of Montreal and elsewhere, analyzed levels of pesticide exposure for nearly 1200 children who participated in a National Health and Nutrition Survey between 2000 and 2004, which included 119 who were diagnosed with ADHD.

Researchers found that there was a significant correlation between pesticide exposure and ADHD diagnosis. The researchers were working with urine samples and identified metabolites related to pesticide exposure. Children who had 10 times the normal amount of metabolites from the common pesticide malathion were 55 percent more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD, but some pesticides had much more significant effects at lower levels. The most common metabolite, dimethyl thiophosphate, was associated with the most significant effect. Children with higher-than-average levels of the metabolite were nearly twice as likely (93% greater odds) of being diagnosed with ADHD than children with undetectable levels of the chemical.

Because these metabolites are eliminated from the body fairly quickly (generally less than six days), researchers hypothesized that these metabolites were a sign of relatively constant exposure to pesticides. Parents who wish to reduce their children's exposure to pesticides should:

  • Always wash fruits and vegetables before eating
  • Buy organic fruits and vegetables whenever possible
  • Select fruits that you peel or that have a hard exterior that resists penetration of pesticides and can be thoroughly washed (like apples)
  • Be aware that fruits with soft peels (such as strawberries, raspberries, and peaches) tend to have higher levels of pesticides
  • Reduce use of pesticides and other chemicals in the household

According to a US department of agriculture study, the type of pesticide being studied here, known as organophosphates, was found in:

  • 28 percent of frozen blueberries
  • 20 percent of celery
  • 25 percent of strawberries
  • 27 percent of green beans
  • 17 percent of peaches
  • 8 percent of broccoli

CropLife America, an industry group representing pesticide manufacturers, issued a response, saying "our review [of the article] leads us to believe much more research is needed to ascertain if there is a direct link between exposure to organophosphate pesticides and the development of ADHD in children."

Although this link between ADHD and low-level exposure to pesticides is still being studied, there are many ways in which pesticide has been shown to hurt children and others. If you suspect that pesticide has poisoned or otherwise adversely affected your community, the toxic tort lawyers of The Cochran Firm stand ready to help you fight those who have poisoned you. Please contact us today for a free initial case evaluation.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 9:41 AM

Motorcycle Accidents in Minneapolis, Minnesota

Research reveals that the major cause of motorcycle accidents is the failure of other motorists to detect motorcycles in traffic.

Statistics prove that over 70% of collisions are a result of a motorist not having seen a motorcyclist. Other causative factors include bad road conditions, speeding, riding skills and experience levels, and driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs.

Researchers at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) report that speeding, aggressive driving and driver distractions by motorists are major factors in motorcycle accidents along with negligence on the part of the motorcycle rider.

When motorcyclists take the safety precaution of wearing personal protective gear, they lessen the risk of serious injury in case of an accident, but even cautious riders can have the misfortune to be involved in an accident.

Motorcycle accidents often result in life-threatening injuries such as spinal cord injuries, head injuries, amputations and even death. If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident you may be eligible for financial compensation in the form of payment for your medical expenses, loss of present and future income, rehabilitation costs and other expenses related to your injuries.

If you live in Metairie, Louisiana and you have suffered injuries from a motorcycle accident or know of someone who has, please contact the Minneapolis, Minnesota office of The Cochran Firm today to learn about what financial compensation you may be entitled to.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:31 AM

Truck Accidents in Miami, Florida

Truck accidents that involve tractor trailers, semi-trucks, or freight carriers like log trucks, automobile transporters, and gasoline tanker trucks almost always cause catastrophic damage when involved in a crash. When these huge trucks crash, they can spill hazardous substances, cause multi-vehicle involvement and reduce passenger vehicles to scrap heaps.

On any given day there are over three million trucks on the highways nationwide. Many businesses in the United States rely on the trucking industry and their ability to move commodities from coast to coast efficiently and relatively inexpensively. Truck drivers are professionals whose own lives depend on safe driving practices, but sometimes the trucking company does not always put safety first, but puts profit over safety.

Speeding to meet deadlines, driving hours without rest and using drugs to stay alert while behind the wheel contribute to many accidents involving trucks. If you are involved in an accident with a truck, you really have the entire trucking company for an adversary. It is very important that you be represented by an experienced truck accident attorney who is skilled in combating the team of lawyers working for the trucking company against you.

You should be financially compensated for all your medical expenses, loss of present and future income, your pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life caused by your involvement in the truck accident.

If you have had an accident involving a truck and feel overwhelmed by the trucking companies efforts to prevent you from getting the financial compensation you deserve, please contact the Miami, Florida office of The Cochran Firm today.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:26 AM

Medical Malpractice in Metairie, Louisiana

When a physician is found responsible in a medical malpractice lawsuit, the patient is financially compensated for the harm they have suffered. These payments are referred to as damages.

Money paid for medical bills, rehabilitation expenses, prescription drugs, nursing home care, domestic services, loss of current and future income and living expenses is called compensatory damages. Under this guideline you can also recover damages for physical pain and suffering, mental and emotional suffering, disfigurement and the loss of enjoyment of life.

It is difficult to assess a monetary value on pain and suffering, but experienced medical malpractice attorneys are trained to investigate the circumstances of your case and come to terms with a just calculation.

A second type of damages assessed in a medical malpractice judgment is called punitive damages. This is money awarded to the patient in order to actually punish the physician for their negligent actions.

Medical malpractice lawsuits have deadlines for filing. Those deadlines are called statutes of limitations and may be as short as one year. It is vitally important to consult an experienced medical malpractice attorney to be certain you are within the time limit required to file your case.

If you or someone you love was the victim of medical malpractice, please contact a medical malpractice attorney at the Metairie, Louisiana office of The Cochran Firm today.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:24 AM

Monday, May 17, 2010

Egregious Medical Malpractice Causes Man to Lose Legs

After a botched routine gall bladder surgery, a Texas Airman stationed in California had to have both legs amputated due to a massive amount of blood loss. Twenty-year-old Colton Read underwent routine laparoscopic surgery at a hospital near Sacramento, but about an hour into the minimally invasive procedure to remove his gallbladder, something went terribly wrong. A nurse was heard by the man’s wife saying, "We need blood now," as she was running out of the operating room.

Allegedly, an Air Force general surgeon mistakenly cut Mr. Read’s aortic valve (the valve that supplies blood to the heart) but waited hours to transport the patient to a hospital with a vascular surgeon. Due to blood loss, Mr. Read lost both legs. While the doctor admitted his mistake, the Reads cannot sue under federal law. Because of the Feres Doctrine, the military cannot be sued for its medical mistake. A bill is pending that would do away with this law.

If you or a loved one has suffered due to medical malpractice, please contact the medical malpractice attorneys at The Cochran Firm, with offices nationwide, today to schedule a confidential consultation.

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posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 10:54 AM

Environmental/Toxic Tort in Memphis, Tennessee

People are exposed to toxic chemicals or materials in many ways, including chemical spills, discharges from landfills, leaking underground storage tanks, and pollution from industrial facilities. A toxic tort refers to a certain kind of personal injury that happens as a consequence of exposure to toxic chemicals or materials.

Cancer is one disease that afflicts workers who are exposed to hazardous chemicals and materials without proper protective equipment or appropriate warnings. Workplace substances known to cause cancer include benzene, beryllium, vinyl chloride, trichloroethylene and ethylene oxide.

Exposure to hazardous materials may cause bronchiolitis/obliterans (popcorn worker’s lung), hormonal and sexual dysfunctions, occupational asthma and stillbirths and miscarriages.

The companies that manufacture and sell these substances have an obligation to make certain workers are aware of the dangers involved and can protect themselves, or they should be held financially responsible for their employees who are harmed by exposure to these substances. Compensation for your pain and suffering, disability, medical expenses, emotional stress, loss of enjoyment of life or the death of a loved one is an entitlement in the case of a toxic tort.

If you or someone you care about was harmed by exposure to a toxic chemical or substance, please contact the Memphis, Tennessee office of The Cochran Firm today to schedule a confidential consultation to protect your legal rights and get the financial compensation you deserve.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:23 AM

Automobile Accidents in Los Angeles, California

Somewhere near 50% of all automobile accidents are reportedly caused by driver distractions. Driver distractions are cell phone use and texting, driver fatigue, passenger behaviors that interfere with driver concentration, reading, and adjusting dashboard controls for the various functions displayed.

Other major causes of automobile accidents are driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs, speeding and adverse weather and road conditions. There are over six million car accidents nationwide annually with over three million injuries and over forty-five thousand deaths, so it makes sense to be prepared for the eventuality of a car accident. Car accidents are unexpected, stressful and frightening occurrences that often happen to very cautious drivers who have the misfortune to be at the wrong place at the wrong time.

It is important to have an experienced automobile accident attorney on your side to deal with insurance companies that routinely deny or delay legitimate accident claims or refuse to settle your claim fairly and honestly.

If you live in Las Vegas, Nevada and you or someone you care about was involved in an automobile accident and you are getting no satisfaction from the insurance company involved in your claim, please contact the Los Angeles, California office of The Cochran Firm today to obtain the help you need to protect your legal rights and get the financial compensation you are entitled to.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:22 AM

Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect in Las Vegas, Nevada

Most people are not aware of the abuse and neglect that happens on a daily basis in nursing homes and assisted living facilities around the country. With over 65 million people over the age of sixty-five years nationwide, nursing home and assisted living abuse and neglect should be a subject we are all aware of.

Sometime soon you or someone you are close to may find themselves in a precarious position as far as health and the ability to care for themselves is concerned. Hopefully, you will encounter a positive experience and find a facility staffed with hardworking, dedicated and caring people. More than likely, you will encounter facilities staffed by uncaring, undertrained and frustrated staff.

The signs of physical abuse in a nursing home or assisted living setting are relatively easy to recognize, such as open sores, cuts, bruises, malnutrition, and poor hygiene. Emotional abuse behaviors such as continuous rocking, agitation and depression are also less recognizable signs of abuse and neglect.

Visiting family and friends find the nursing home and assisted living residents reluctant to speak out about the abuse or unable to communicate their concerns. Residents of these facilities are guaranteed certain rights under the law and at the very least should be treated with respect and dignity in a safe and clean environment.

If you suspect someone you care about is a victim of nursing home or assisted living abuse and neglect, please contact the Las Vegas, Nevada office of The Cochran Firm today to protect their legal rights.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:20 AM

Sunday, May 16, 2010

The Defective Drugs Yaz and Yasmin in Jackson, Mississippi

Although there are many brands of oral contraceptives available Yaz and Yasmin have dominated the marketplace due to the manufacturer's aggressive marketing campaign. Bayer Healthcare Pharmaceuticals is the subject of multiple lawsuits over alleged life-threatening side effects attributed to these popular oral contraceptives.

The lawsuits allege the pharmaceutical company failed to warn women and their physicians of the increased risk of injury associated with the pills while overstating the benefits of the oral contraceptives. Pharmaceutical manufacturers are obligated to disclose any known side effects to consumers, either directly or by making the information available to physicians.

The life threatening conditions associated with these pills include deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolisms. The irresponsible marketing of these oral contraceptives by Bayer Healthcare Pharmaceuticals has caused innumerable young healthy women to face devastating health conditions caused by a drug they were led to believe was safe.

If you or someone you know has suffered blood clots, pulmonary embolisms, elevated potassium levels, hypertension, seizures, convulsions or kidney problems after taking Yaz or Yasmin, you should contact an experienced defective pharmaceuticals attorney to investigate the reasons surrounding these occurrences and whether you are entitled to financial compensation.

We encourage you to contact the Jackson, Mississippi office of The Cochran Firm today to schedule a confidential consultation with an attorney experienced in defective pharmaceutical claims to protect your legal rights and obtain the compensation you deserve.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:18 AM

Alcohol, Drug Abuse and Car Accidents in Huntsville, Alabama

The use of alcohol and drugs while driving is a major contributing factor to automobile accidents nationwide. The problem of drug abuse is not only limited to illegal drugs, but pertains to the use of prescription medications as well. Substances that can impair your ability to drive include alcohol, marijuana, cocaine, amphetamines, heroin and prescription medications such as Vicodin, Percocet, Valium and Xanax.

Someone in the United States is injured or killed by an alcohol or drug impaired driver every two minutes. Over 40% of fatal automobile accidents involve alcohol or drugs. Sleeping pills, muscle relaxants, alcohol and other depressants work to adversely affect motor skills, slowing reaction times and distorting vision.

The decision to operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs is a choice not an accident. The result of the choice to drive while under the influence destroys lives. If you have been victimized by an impaired driver you should retain an experienced automobile accident attorney to assist you in seeking financial compensation for your injuries. You should be able to be compensated for your medical expenses, loss of income, future earning capacity and your pain and suffering.

If you live in Huntsville, Alabama, please contact The Cochran Firm today to protect your legal rights and the rights of those you love by scheduling a confidential consultation at no cost to you to learn about the steps you can take to secure financial compensation for your injuries.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:16 AM

Automobile Accidents/Rear End Collisions in Houston, Texas

There are over 2.5 million rear end collisions nationwide annually, making rear end collisions the most common type of automobile accident. The bumper system on a car is an important safety feature that is capable of absorbing the force of a low speed collision, but at times the impact of the collision is absorbed by the occupants of the automobile instead.

A low speed, rear impact collision, although resulting in minor damage to the automobile, can result in serious injuries to the occupants of the vehicle. Whiplash is the most common injury sustained in a low impact rear end collision and is the result of a sudden, violent, and involuntary back and forth motion of the neck. Whiplash is soft tissue trauma to the muscles and ligaments of the neck that results in pain, swelling, stiffness, headache, nausea, numbness and loss of balance.

If you or someone you know has been injured in a rear end collision car accident you should protect your legal rights by consulting with a rear end collision car accident lawyer who has experience in this field of law. You deserve to be financially compensated for your medical expenses, lost wages and possible loss of future income, due to the injury you have suffered because of someone else’s negligence.

Please contact the Houston, Texas office of The Cochran Firm today and learn how to obtain the financial compensation you are entitled to for the injuries suffered in a rear end collision.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:15 AM

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Xenical and Alli Weight Loss Drugs in Dothan, Alabama

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has raised concerns that the popular weight loss drugs, Xenical and Alli containing orlistat, may cause serious liver damage.

Xenical is a prescription medication that contains 120 mg. of orlistat and Alli is an over-the-counter medication that contains 60 mg. of orlistat. Both Xenical and Alli are to be used with a reduced calorie, low-fat diet to produce weight loss.

Xenical is manufactured by Roche Pharmaceuticals and Alli is manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline and together they have generated almost $200 million in sales.

Reports of serious liver damage have surfaced with the use of orlistat including liver failure, with symptoms such as fatigue and weakness, fever, jaundice, abdominal pain, brown urine, nausea and vomiting, loss of appetite and light-colored stools.

If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with liver failure, liver damage, liver inflammation, lesions on the liver or hepatitis after taking the potentially defective drugs Xenical or Alli, you should consult an attorney as you may be entitled to financial compensation for the damage you have suffered.

If you live in Dothan, Alabama or the surrounding area and you have taken Xenical or Alli, even if you are not having symptoms at the present time, please contact The Cochran Firm today to learn all you can about this disturbing situation and speak with an experienced defective pharmaceutical attorney, at no cost to you.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:13 AM

Defective Products-Chinese Dry Wall in Detroit, Michigan

Thousands of homes in this country were constructed during the past few years using defective, toxic dry wall imported from China. The use of this defective drywall has led to serious illnesses and damage to those homes. The majority of the defective drywall was used between the years of 2004 and 2006, but there are reports of this drywall still being available for sale, waiting to be used by an unsuspecting public.

The defective Chinese drywall emits corrosive gases that have a foul odor, and can damage electrical systems, and the copper and other metals used throughout the home including the heating and cooling systems. The foul odor the drywall emits is reminiscent of rotten eggs and exposure to the drywall is said to be responsible for respiratory problems, nose bleeds, headaches and eye irritation.

Over one hundred thousand homes in the United States are suspected of having defective Chinese drywall installed. Over five hundred million pounds of defective Chinese drywall made it to this country in a three year period.

If you suspect Chinese drywall is the reason for your health problems or you have experienced the damage and destruction of your electrical and heating and cooling systems in your new home for an unknown reason until now, please contact the Detroit, Michigan office of The Cochran Firm today to learn more about this looming catastrophe.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:12 AM

Defective Consumer Products in Dallas, Texas

In recent years, serious injuries and even deaths have been attributed to defective consumer products. Everyday products we all use without a second thought to our safety or the safety of the ones we love have been responsible for devastating injuries and fatalities.

Defective automobiles, tires, infant car seats, faulty medical devices like pacemakers and defibrillators, vaccines, toys, appliances, power tools, dog food, dry wall from China, the list is endless and frightening.

If you or someone you care about has been injured or killed by the use of a defective consumer product, you must consult a product liability attorney as soon as possible as there are time limits involved in filing a claim against the manufacturer, designer or the distributor of the defective consumer product.

An experienced product liability attorney will assist you in obtaining the medical records, bills for your medical expenses and documenting your injuries with photographs to record the severity of the harm done to you, as this will determine the level of compensation you are entitled to.

Financial compensation for your injuries may include the cost of present and future medical care and treatment, rehabilitation expenses, loss of present and future income, the loss of enjoyment of life and in the case of a death, funeral and burial expenses, and survivor benefits.

Please contact the Dallas, Texas office of The Cochran Firm today to schedule a confidential consultation at no cost to you to discuss the possibility of filing a product liability lawsuit so you may obtain justice and receive the financial compensation you deserve.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:09 AM

Friday, May 14, 2010

Wrongful Death and DUI in Chicago, Illinois

A wrongful death is legal terminology used to describe the death of someone due to the negligence or wrongful actions of another which entitles the deceased's survivors to financial compensation for their loss. Since absolutely nothing can replace the loss of a loved one, the legal system has only one option to bring justice and comfort to the survivors. That one option is in the form of financial damages to be paid by the individual that is responsible for the death.

One of the most common examples of a wrongful death is being killed by a drunk driver. Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI) is a major cause of automobile accidents with fatalities. Someone is killed every thirty minutes in the United States by a drunk driver. Lives are devastated by alcohol and drug impaired drivers who make the choice to drive while under the influence.

If someone you love was the victim of an alcohol or drug impaired driver, you are entitled to financial compensation for the loss you have suffered from the driver, the bar or restaurant that served the driver or the person or homeowner who provided the alcohol to their guest. You may be entitled to financial compensation for medical, funeral and burial expenses, the pain and suffering of the deceased prior to death, loss of financial support and your pain and suffering due to the loss of your loved one.

We encourage you to please contact the Chicago, Illinois office of The Cochran Firm today to schedule a no cost to you consultation to learn about your legal rights in this situation and obtain the financial compensation you are entitled to.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:07 AM

Police Brutality in Birmingham, Alabama

Police brutality refers to the excessive use of force, physical, verbal or psychological, by a police officer. In some instances, the use of excessive force is triggered by so-called "contempt of cop", a perceived disrespect and disregard for the authority of the police.

Police brutality is just one of various forms of police misconduct which may include false arrest, intimidation, racial profiling, political repression, surveillance abuse, sexual harassment, and police corruption.

Studies have shown most police brutality cases go unreported and undocumented. Police brutality is often associated with racial profiling, differences in religion, politics or socioeconomic status. Some police officers view certain sections of the population as generally deserving of punishment and certain sections of the population view the police as oppressors.

Although the use of force by the police is certainly warranted at times, there are instances when the police may step over the line and take advantage of their authority and cause undue harm to an undeserving victim. The very ones we depend on for protection from the criminals in our communities should never become the criminals themselves.

If you live in Birmingham, Alabama and you or someone you know has been the victim of police brutality in the form of physical, verbal or psychological abuse, please contact the experienced police brutality personal injury attorneys at The Cochran Firm today to protect your legal rights.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:06 AM

Spinal Cord Injury in Atlanta, Georgia

Almost twenty thousand people in this country suffer a spinal cord injury every year. There are, at the present time, over two hundred thousand people living their daily lives coping with the devastating consequences of a spinal cord injury. Automobile accidents are a major contributing factor to the incidence of spinal cord injuries, with falls and sports related injuries also a factor in the number of injuries reported.

A spinal cord injury is usually the result of a sudden, forceful impact to the spine that damages or dislocates the vertebrae. Although some spinal cord injuries have a reasonably good prognosis, most injuries to the spinal cord result in either partial or complete paralysis.

The physical, emotional and financial burdens suffered by victims of spinal cord injuries are immeasurable. The cost of medical care and treatment over the long term can total hundreds of thousands of dollars, and years of pain and suffering.
Since the permanence and severity of a spinal cord injury make this a life-altering occurrence, it is vitally important you have an experienced spinal cord injury attorney on your side to make certain all your legal rights are protected and you obtain the financial compensation you are entitled to.

Residents of the Atlanta, Georgia area who have suffered a spinal cord injury should contact The Cochran Firm today to obtain the representation necessary to obtain justice and the financial compensation you deserve.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 7:04 AM

Personal Injury Laws and Babies

One idea underlying the philosophy of personal injury laws is that they protect everyone who has incurred suffering or injury from a product. A new case is taking up the legal cudgels for the most defenseless members of society.

Procter & Gamble, or P&G, announced in January that it was introducing a new version of its Pampers baby diaper. Since then, a number of parents have complained on Internet forums that their children suffered unusually severe skin burns, blisters, rashes, and other harmful effects from the new product. The creator of a Facebook page on the issue said more than 3,000 parents have posted complaints on it.

Now the first lawsuit over the new product has been filed. It states that P&G should have known about the problems with the new Pampers, and wants the court to require that the company test the products to ensure that they will not cause rashes, blisters, burns, or other skin ailments. It also wants parents to be compensated for treatment their children may have received, and seeks reimbursement for the diapers themselves.

Earlier this month, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and Health Canada said they were investigating complaints against the new product.

The law extends equal protection to all. No parents would sit by idly while their child got sicker from a bad medicine, or would ignore the dangers of poisoned food. Injury to our children from defective products is also a valid concern.

At The Cochran Firm, our personal injury lawyers are ready to protect the rights of anyone, young or old. If you or a family member has been injured by a defective product, please contact us for a confidential, no-obligation discussion at whichever of our nationwide offices is most convenient to you.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 6:11 AM

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Tainted Lettuce Causes New Injuries

Few of us think of lettuce as a threat. Recently, however, an outbreak of E. coli linked to tainted lettuce has spread to a fourth state, causing more cases of personal injury.

Tennessee has confirmed a case of E. coli 0145, joining Michigan, New York, and Ohio. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or CDC, reported Wednesday that there are 23 confirmed cases in all, up from 19 last week, with seven more suspected. No deaths have been reported.

Investigators have linked the illnesses to tainted romaine lettuce grown on a Yuma, Arizona, farm. One company has distributed lettuce grown on the farm to wholesalers and food service outlets in 25 states.

E. coli 0145 can cause symptoms ranging from mild diarrhea to abdominal cramps and bloody stool. It can also cause a potentially life-threatening complication called hemolytic uremic syndrome, or HUS.

At least 16 outbreaks of E. coli linked to lettuce and other leafy green vegetables have occurred since 1993. A 2006 outbreak linked to spinach caused five deaths nationwide. It seems, though, that once publicity subsides, the topic fades from attention.

Nothing is more basic than food safety. When the health, and even the lives, of consumers are jeopardized by an invisible threat of which they have no warning, they deserve to have advocates who will press for compensation. This is true whether the defective products are the kind you drive or the kind you eat.

At The Cochran Firm, our product liability lawyers are ready to work for you. If you have a possible injury case, please contact us for a free consultation at any of our nationwide offices.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 10:05 AM

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Toyota Faces New Defective Vehicle Probe

Toyota Corp. is facing another federal investigation, and potentially another huge fine, over defective vehicles. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, or NHTSA, is looking into steering linkage failures that it says could cause loss of control and accidents in nearly 1 million Toyota pickups built between 1989 and 1998. The federal agency says the defect has resulted in 16 crashes, three deaths, and seven injuries.

Toyota recalled the Japanese models in 2004, but did not issue a recall in the United States until 2005, according to a news report. In a 2004 letter to NHTSA, Toyota said the problem did not affect U.S. vehicles, though the same parts were used in both countries. The models involved include pickups, T100s, and 4Runner SUVs.

Federal law requires that NHTSA be notified of a safety defect in U.S. vehicles within five business days. Toyota said it did inform the agency within five days as required, and pledged to cooperate with the investigation. The news report said that Toyota has received 52 complaints about the linkage problem from U.S. consumers.

In April, Toyota agreed to pay a record $16.4 million fine for its handling of a problem with sticking gas pedals.

The risk of personal injury from any kind of defective product is cause for concern. Where motor vehicles are concerned, not only the user can be injured or killed. This risk makes it necessary that manufacturers exercise all possible care.

At The Cochran Firm, we want your safety to be the chief concern of all manufacturers. When their failure to do so causes injury or death, we will fight for you in court. If you think you need legal assistance, please contact our experienced personal-injury lawyers for a confidential consultation at any of our nationwide offices.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 11:24 AM

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Glaxo Pays $60 Million to Settle Avandia Cases

GlaxoSmithKline has agreed to pay $60 million to settle about 700 lawsuits filed over side effects of its Avandia diabetes drug, according to a news report. This settlement is said to be the first for personal injury claims against Avandia.

However, the company still faces thousands of lawsuits from other users alleging inadequate warning about the risk of heart attacks, heart failure, and other injuries from the drug.

Some experts estimate that use of Avandia caused between 60,000 and 200,000 heart attacks and deaths in this country from 1999 to 2006. In recent months, critics have launched a new push for its recall. Earlier this year, a Senate report criticized Glaxo for intimidating doctors who spoke out about the side effects of Avandia, and for failing to warn users about the risks it presented.

The Food and Drug Administration is conducting a safety review of Avandia, and expects to complete it in July.

These tragedies illustrate the risks that defective pharmaceutical products pose to the public. At a House subcommittee hearing recently, some lawmakers questioned how the drug ever won approval in the first place. Second thoughts, however, do nothing to help consumers who have suffered injury from defective drugs.

At The Cochran Firm, we understand the anguish of patients who discover that a drug meant to improve their life has only caused them more harm. We believe that every individual to whom such a thing happens deserves vigorous representation. If you believe that you or a family member has suffered injury from a defective drug, please contact us for a confidential consultation at any of our nationwide offices.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 10:11 AM

Monday, May 10, 2010

Asbestos Dangers and Toxic Torts

Many people have never heard of toxic tort lawsuits, but they can serve as an important tool to protect the public. A toxic tort is a type of personal injury that occurs from exposure to toxic chemicals or materials. In some occupations, repeated exposure to harmful substances causes common illnesses.

Asbestos is one such harmful substance. Builders, welders, and electricians are some of the trades that traditionally have had high exposure to it.

The potential dangers of asbestos have been known for a long time. One disease associated with inhaling asbestos fibers is mesothelioma, a cancer of the membrane around the lungs for which no cure is known at present. Only in the 1970s, however, did regulatory agencies begin to rethink their traditional “hands-off” attitude.

Now a federal study is going to review health data of more than 18,000 retired and still-working firefighters to determine if they face an increased risk of cancer.

We welcome any recognition of the dangers that asbestos and other harmful materials can cause, but we also want to ensure that those people who are suffering the effects of exposure to them get the treatment and compensation that they deserve.

At The Cochran Firm, we will fight for your interests if you have become ill or have been injured from exposure to toxic torts. Please contact us for a free, confidential consultation at any of our nationwide offices.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 9:03 AM

Friday, May 7, 2010

Lettuce Recall

Freshway Food has initiated a voluntary recall of products containing romaine lettuce. These products were all sold under the Freshway and Imperial Sysco brand to food service outlets, wholesale, and in-store retail salad bars and delis. The recall has been issued due to potential E. coli contamination of the romaine lettuce.

The contaminated lettuce products were sold to wholesalers and food service outlets in most states east of the Mississippi River. The following company's salad bars and delis contained the contaminated lettuce:

  • Kroger
  • Giant Eagle
  • Ingles Markets
  • Marsh

If you have purchased romaine lettuce at any of these salad bars or delis, you should throw it away immediately. However, the romaine lettuce sold at supermarkets was not affected.

If you have become ill from eating contaminated romaine lettuce at one of these food outlets, you may be entitled to file a defective product claim to receive compensation for your damages. The experienced attorneys at The Cochran Firm have handled many defective product claims over the years, and we can help you receive the compensation you deserve.

Please contact The Cochran Firm today to schedule your free initial consultation. We serve clients nationwide.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 9:47 AM

Thursday, May 6, 2010

GM Recalls Hummer Model On Defect Concerns

General Motors has announced the voluntary recall of all Hummer H3s produced since the 2006 model year in another case of defective vehicles. A spokesman for Hummer said that an ornamental device on the hood, called a louver, can come loose and detach from the car during driving. The recall affects 164,190 Hummers in the U.S.

The carmaker warned that if the louver came loose from the car it could hit another vehicle, possibly distracting drivers and leading to an auto accident.

According to Hummer spokesman Nick Richards, two complaints about the problem have been filed in this country and three in Japan.

Any defective product poses dangers to the user. Where vehicles are concerned, even a small problem can cause catastrophe on the road. It seems that almost every day another automobile manufacturer is issuing a recall. If you have been driving a vehicle for years, and suddenly a recall is announced, you have been in a hazardous situation that you could not possibly have known about. The risk of personal injury or death was there all the time, and if an accident did occur, you might need capable attorneys to defend your interests.

At The Cochran Firm, we are proud of our record in representing clients who have suffered from vehicle manufacturing defects. If you have had an experience of this kind, please contact us for a confidential, no-obligation review of your case at any of our nationwide offices.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 10:33 AM

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Glaxo Suspends ‘Red Wine’ Drug Trial

In recent years, much attention has been given to reports that red wine offers health benefits. But safety concerns have prompted GlaxoSmithKline to suspend a clinical trial of a drug that mimics a health-boosting compound found in red wine, raising concern over the possibility of personal injury.

The substance SRT501 is a proprietary form of resveratrol, found in grapes and red wine and thought to offer health benefits, among them preventing heart disease and potentially slowing the aging process.

In 2008, Glaxo acquired the rights to SRT501 when it bought biotech Sirtris Pharmaceuticals. The clinical trial, testing the addition of SRT501 to the cancer drug Velcade for use by people with multiple myeloma, was suspended this week following, in the company’s words, “unexpected safety events.” The testing began in March 2009 and was to have continued into this December.

The dangers of defective consumer products are manifold, and pharmaceutical products in particular can have effects that may not even be noticed until years later. And if injury or death result, the people who suffer the consequences deserve to have their interests looked after.

At The Cochran Firm, we take very seriously the responsibility of assisting people who may have sustained a pharmaceutical injury caused by defective drugs. If you are concerned that you are one of these people, we urge you to please contact us for a free, confidential consultation.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 9:52 AM

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Baxter Recalls Defective Medical Product

A defective medical product is being withdrawn from the U.S. market under an agreement between the manufacturer and the Food and Drug Administration, or FDA.

Baxter Healthcare Corp., the main American subsidiary of Baxter International, has announced the recall of its Colleague infusion pump. "There are just under 200,000 of these pumps in use" at hospitals and other medical facilities, according to Baxter spokeswoman Erin Gardiner.

She said that Colleague pumps will be phased out, and that the model has not been sold to new customers since 2005. Baxter will exchange its Sigma Spectrum pump for the Colleague model, she said.

The FDA on April 30 said a Baxter plan to keep the pumps in use until 2013 was "unacceptable." On April 23, the FDA said that infusion pumps used to administer drugs and liquids were linked to more than 56,000 complaints of injuries, deaths, and malfunctions between 2005 and 2009.

One function of this infusion pump is to deliver nutrients to patients in comas, who obviously are in no position to speak up for themselves. Imagine the grief and anger that a family would feel if it learned that the very products they were relying on to sustain their loved ones caused personal injury, or even death, instead.

At The Cochran Firm, we stand ready to seek justice when average citizens fall victim to defective products or services. If you wish to discuss a possible claim of this kind, or just want to know more about how we can help you, please contact us for a no-obligation discussion at any of our nationwide offices.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 9:59 AM

Monday, May 3, 2010

Chrysler Dodge Faulty Gas Pedals Under Scrutiny

People who are following the recent cascade of news stories about defective vehicles have another report of gas pedal problems to read about. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has announced an investigation of sticking gas pedals on about 10,000 Dodge Caliber model year 2007 compact cars, which are made by Chrysler.

According to a news report, in a few cases parts of the gas pedal assembly have fallen off, causing the pedals to become stuck. Chrysler said the investigation has narrowed the problem down to cars manufactured in a five-week period.

Chrysler is offering free pedal inspections to owners of 2007 Dodge Calibers manufactured during the period in question.

The manufacturer of these pedals, CTS Corp., also made the gas pedals under investigation in the Toyota case. However, no connection is seen in the Dodge Caliber pedal sticking and that of Toyota.

As always, we are concerned about the possibility of motor vehicle accidents resulting from defective products. Chrysler says that no accidents or injuries stemming from these vehicles have been reported. We hope that any problems will be corrected swiftly.

At The Cochran Firm, our skilled personal injury attorneys are prepared to represent consumers when faulty products have inflicted injury or death upon them, whether or not the specific product has received media attention. If you believe that you have suffered from such a product, we urge you to contact us for a free, no-obligation discussion of your case at any of our offices nationwide.


posted by Benjamin A. Irwin at 10:41 AM

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