Parents File Lawsuit for Toddler's Death Allegedly Caused by Children's Tylenol


January 07, 2012

As we have reported previously in this blog, there has been a substantial number of drugs and medical products recalled by Johnson and Johnson (J&J) over the last several years. These recalls have been based on a wide range of quality control issues, including foreign objects in the drugs, foul odors being emitted and excessive amounts of the active ingredient. These quality control issues are now alleged to have taken a fatal turn.

A Washington toddler suffered sudden liver failure after taking a dose of Children’s Tylenol that has previously been recalled. The parents of the child believe that the Tylenol is to blame, and have filed a lawsuit seeking damages for the tragic death of their toddler.

According to the legal pleadings filed in the case, the parents gave their two-year-old Very Berry Strawberry flavored Children’s Tylenol for a minor fever. The toddler began throwing up blood within a half hour of taking the medication. Although the toddler was rushed to the hospital, he died the next day. The lawsuit filed by the family alleges that the toddler died because the liquid medication contained an excessive amount of the active ingredient Acetaminophen. Acetaminophen overdose is widely regarded as the leading cause of liver failure.

A number of recalls of J&J products during the last few years have involved concerns that poor quality control may have resulted in excessive amounts of Acetaminophen being included in the recalled products. Many of these recalls covered products manufactured in a Fort Washington, PA plant operated by McNeil Consumer Healthcare, which is a subsidiary of J&J. The product that allegedly caused the toddler’s death in the pending lawsuit was part of a recalled lot produced in the Fort Washington plant. The problems with this facility were so severe that the plant was shutdown.

Ironically, J&J concede that the medicine ingested by the toddler was part of a recalled lot produced by the now defunct Fort Washington plant but claim that the issues with this particular recall were not related to "serious adverse events or cases of overdose". This claim seems suspect given a statement released at the time of the specific recall at issue: "Some of the products included in the recall may contain a higher concentration of active ingredient than is specified; others may contain inactive ingredients that may not meet internal testing requirements; and others may contain tiny particles.”

Extensive medical exams were performed on the toddler and an autopsy was conducted after his tragic death, which ruled out viruses or other causes of death other than liver toxicity. The toddler’s liver enzymes were triple the normal level. The attorney representing the parents has indicated that there is extensive medical literature that high liver enzymes are caused by medication rather than illness.

If you have suffered liver failure or liver damage, you may be a victim of liver toxicity caused by Tylenol or other products containing the active ingredient Acetaminophen. Our experienced Tylenol injury lawyers can evaluate your situation to determine if you have a right to financial compensation for your injuries. Our Georgia defective drug accident attorneys are available to assist clients throughout all of Georgia and the Southeast, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state. No matter where you are located our attorneys are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you. Call us 24 hours a day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit us online at www.montlick.com and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.

Posted by David Montlick

Please Note:
Many of our blog articles discuss the law. All information provided about the law is very general in nature and should not be relied up as legal advice. Every situation is different, and should be analyzed by a lawyer who can provide individualized advice based on the facts involved in your unique situation, and a consideration of all of the nuances of the statutes and case law that apply at the time.