On January 6, 2014, an Army reservist in New York filed a lawsuit in the Kings County Supreme Court against a health food business alleging that she was injured as a result of using the diet pills she purchased from the business that led to her inpatient treatment at a mental hospital. Her bizarre behavior that caused her to be committed for mental health issues following her use of the over-the-counter diet pills included hearing voices, having arguments with total strangers, stopping her car in the middle of a busy intersection, tearing a screen door at her home, stabbing pillows and photographs, and sending her mother aggressive text messages.
The Army reservist alleges that she spent five days in a mental hospital and her planned deployment to Afghanistan had to be postponed as a result of the diet pills that she used. She incurred hospital and other medical bills caused by her change in mental status as well as lost time from her work as an emergency room clerk. Her lawsuit filed against the health food store that sold her the diet pills in December 2012 alleges that the label of the packaging failed to list substances that lab tests found in the pills and that the pills contained high levels of caffeine, a laxative that is restricted from use in over-the-counter medications, and a weight-loss stimulant that the FDA had banned in 2010.
The 26-year-old woman claims that she successfully used the same diet pills for the recommended one-month period one year earlier but this time she had to stop using the diet pills after five days because she started experiencing light sleep that progressed to complete insomnia for six days.
In a warning to consumers titled “Tainted Weight Loss Products” that was last updated on December 19, 2013, the FDA stated, “FDA has identified an emerging trend where over-the-counter products, frequently represented as dietary supplements, contain hidden active ingredients that could be harmful. Consumers may unknowingly take products laced with varying quantities of approved prescription drug ingredients, controlled substances, and untested and unstudied pharmaceutically active ingredients. These deceptive products can harm you! Hidden ingredients are increasingly becoming a problem in products promoted for weight loss.”
The FDA warns in a black-box statement: “Remember, FDA cannot test all products on the market that contain potentially harmful hidden ingredients. Enforcement actions and consumer advisories for tainted products only cover a small fraction of the tainted over-the-counter products on the market.”
The FDA warns consumers: Dietary supplements are NOT FDA Approved. A common misconception is that the FDA has reviewed the dietary supplement products available in stores or online. Dietary Supplements firms are responsible for making sure claims are true and products are safe. Some of the products claim to be “natural” or only contain “herbal” ingredients, but actually contain potentially harmful ingredients not listed on the product’s label or in promotional advertisements. These products have not been approved by the FDA, are illegal, and may be potentially harmful to unsuspecting consumers.
If you or a family member suffered injuries or other harms as a result of taking diet pills or other weight loss substances, you should promptly consult with an attorney in your state who may investigate your possible liability claim for you and represent you in a lawsuit, if appropriate.
Click here to visit our website or call us toll free at 800-295-3959 to be connected with diet pill lawyers (weight loss lawyers) who may assist you with your claim.
Turn to us when you don’t know where to turn.