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Botox May Cause Brain Damage; Virginia Man Awarded $212 Million

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Have a mommy frown, crow’s feet, forehead wrinkles?

Botox can fix all that and has been touted as the fountain of youth. But no matter how popular a drug is, it’s not always safe. A Fredericksburg, Virginia (VA), man found this out the hard way when a Botox injection left him brain-damaged and disabled

He has just been awarded $212 million by a jury, reports the Virginian Pilot.

The verdict against drugmaker Allergan Inc. came Thursday after a nearly two-week personal injury trial in a Richmond, Virginia federal court. The verdict awarded Douglas Ray, 67, includes $12 million in compensatory damages and $200 million in punitive damages. It is the largest penalty ever in a Botox injury case.

Ray was injected with the drug in 2007 to treat hand tremors. He quickly fell ill with a fever and rash, said his lawyer, Ray Chester. Ray suffered brain damage and now requires round-the-clock care, according to his Virginia personal injury lawyer. The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Richmond, Va., alleged that Irvine-based Allergan failed to adequately warn Ray’s doctor about the potential risks of Botox for off-label use.

Known primarily as a wrinkle-buster, doctors also have prescribed the drug for treating serious medical conditions such as cerebral palsy and chronic migraines. "The use of Botox on both cosmetic and medical purposes is only approved for very narrow uses by the FDA," Chester said after the verdict was announced Thursday. "But Allergan has promoted it to doctors all over the country for uses other than wrinkles."

Drug companies that are motivated by greed and profit deserve to be punished. These drug companies will push doctors to use the drug in dangerous ways even if there may be consequences to patients.

But even if you do use Botox in its intended way, if you do not have a qualified technician, nurse or doctor to administer it there are often injuries as well. Many times Day Spas or Med Spas may not have qualified technicians administering the treatments. Most of these spas ally themselves with a physician to obtain devices regulated by the FDA and pharmaceuticals although the actual people injecting are not doctors.

Our Virginia injury and dangerous drug attorneys have taken on the large drug companies with regard to other dangerous drugs, such as Fentanyl/duragesic pain patches, and we have labeled Fentanyl as the the Merchant of Accidental Death in a series of Virginia Injuryboard blogs and blogs on fentanyl wrongful deaths on our Virginia Beach-Norfolk Injury law firm blog.

About the Editors: The Shapiro, Cooper, Lewis & Appleton personal injury law firm, which has offices in Virginia (VA) and North Carolina (NC), edits the injury law blogs Virginia Beach Injuryboard, Norfolk Injuryboard and Northeast North Carolina Injuryboard as pro bono services.