A woman in Concord, N.H., was awarded $21 million after she was diagnosed with Stevens Johnson Syndrome (SJS) which caused her to permanently lose her eyesight after taking medication.
In September 2010, Karen Bartlett won her lawsuit against Mutual Pharmaceutical Co. after she suffered from the debilitating effects of SJS and Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis (TENS). In 2005, Karen was prescribed Sulindac to help treat a pain that she had in her shoulder. As early as two weeks into taking her medicine, she started getting red spots on her face. She also had some irritation in her eyes. By February, Karen was taken to the hospital and admitted because of pain in her eyes and throat and because a rash had developed.
There, she was diagnosed with both SJS and TENS. These disorders eventually made Karen suffer from severe burns on her skin, mucous membranes and eyes. In total, she had to stay in the hospital for 112 days and most of that she spent in pain. In her lawsuit, Karen claims that she lost her sight and suffered from a slew of permanent disabilities because of all of the damage that occurred in her throat, stomach and lungs. She is also forced to live with permanent physical scars.
While just about any medication can cause SJS and TENS, Karen’s attorney claimed that Sulindac has the highest amount of cases of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs attributed to it. The lawyers for Mutual Pharmaceutical Co. defended their client by claiming that the reality is that there are risks in taking every drug. Clearly that defense didn’t prove effective because Karen Bartlett won her case.
If you are taking any medication and think that you might have some of the symptoms of SJS such as red or purple rash that spreads, pain in the mouth, nose, eyes and throat, contact your doctor immediately. You may be eligible for compensation and I can help.