Falsely Advertised Herbal Supplements Can Cause Dangerous Allergic Reactions

Falsely Advertised Herbal Supplements Can Cause Dangerous Allergic Reactions

Most of the drugs you can pick up at the grocery store or pharmacy, etc., have been tested and approved by the FDA. So-called “herbal supplements,” however, which can be purchased at a wide range of stores, aren’t subjected to the rigorous FDA testing. Thus, as our personal injury lawyers know, it’s no real surprise that what you get inside the bottle of these supplements often differs considerably from what is advertised on the labels of the bottles.

According to the Sun Sentinel, special DNA testing on hundreds of bottles of store-brand herbal supplements, which had been sold as treatments for a variety of issues including memory loss and prostate troubles, revealed that roughly 80% of the bottles contained none of the herbs listed on the bottle’s label. Rather than filling the bottles with the herbs they advertised, the manufacturers instead stuffed the “herbal supplements” bottles with inexpensive filler products such as what, rice and houseplants.

So, what is the implication of this? As New York’s Attorney General pointed out, the “supplements” pose a serious risk in that people with allergies, or who are taking certain contraindicated medications, can suffer truly dangerous reactions from the substances in the herbal supplements bottle not listed on the bottle’s label. In other words: you don’t necessarily know what you’re buying when you pick up a bottle of herbal supplements. Because the bottle can contain something it doesn’t list as part of its ingredients, you might be inadvertently consuming something you’d otherwise know you shouldn’t.

Major retailers such as Wal-Mart and GNC have responded to the study; the former by saying they’re removing the falsely labeled herbal supplements from store shelves, while the latter remarked they’re concerned with the study’s findings but at the same time are standing by the “quality, purity and potency” of their private-label products, including the herbal supplements.

The study’s findings mean that those who have had harmful, allergic reactions to certain herbal supplements might have legal recourse against the manufacturer, distributor and/or marketer of the products, assuming it can be proven that the allergic reaction was caused by the ingestion of a certain ingredient not disclosed on the bottle’s label.

At the Law Offices of Aronberg & Aronberg, we’ve spent combined decades representing individuals who have been injured due to the wrongdoing or negligence of another. Whether that wrongdoing or negligence came in the form of distracted driving which caused a car crash, or failure to clean up a dangerous spill in a grocery store aisle, or deception in the form of listing certain ingredients on a pill bottle and then filling the bottle with something else, those responsible for causing harm to others because of the wrongdoing are responsible for compensating the injured parties for their losses. When we make go after the liable parties, we look to have our clients compensated for many things, including but not limited to medical bills, loss of income, loss of enjoyment of life, etc.

When corporations produce goods and send them out into the marketplace, they have a responsibility to the consumers. Calling something an “herbal supplement” with, say, ginseng, and then manufacturing pills filled with rice and flour, is deceptive. If someone thinks they’re purchasing ginseng and ingests flour instead, that ingestion could lead to serious medical consequences if that person is allergic to flour.

If you’ve gotten sick from or have had an allergic reaction to an herbal supplement, please contact our personal injury attorneys at Aronberg & Aronberg by calling 561-266-9191 or e-mailing us at daronberg@build.simple.biz to schedule a free consultation. We look forward to assisting you.


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