Jack3d, which is sold at health stores in Florida and across the U.S., has been at the forefront of concern as one of several dietary supplements that contain dimethylamylamine, or DMAA. Several companies use the main ingredient DMAA in dietary supplements advertised to maximize your energy, concentration, and metabolism. Dietary supplements are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (F.D.A.) in the same manner as food or medications. Dietary supplements are required to only have “dietary ingredients” and must be shown to be safe before they are marketed.
In April 2012, the F.D.A. issued a warning letter to ten manufacturers and distributors stating that they failed to submit a notification that DMAA is being used in their product as a New Dietary Ingredient. 42 adverse event reports had been submitted to the agency with complaints ranging from cardiac to nervous system disorders. DMAA is known to narrow the blood vessel and arteries, raising blood pressure that causes shortness of breath to tightness in the chest to heart attack. Manufacturers of these dietary supplements still insist that their products are safe.
Following the F.D.A warning letters, Drug Testing and Analysis published the results of a study that showed the DMAA found in the dietary supplements was not from a natural source. On the list of ingredients, it is often listed as sourced from geranium, but the researchers found it was indistinguishable from the synthetic version of drug. This finding highlighted the long-running debate for greater regulatory oversight of supplements
The public spotlight has landed on the DMAA product Jack3d after two men in the armed services died after using their product. The Department of Defense went as far as removing all products containing DMAA for sale in stores on military bases. One soldier’s family has filed suit claiming that the companies deceptively marketed the product as safe for use and not warning consumers about the potential health risks.
The basis of the family’s complaint lines up with Florida’s punitive damages requirements, which can be available in wrongful death suits. In a wrongful death suit, the defendant party is held liable as the cause of the death. Those who qualify to sue may recover compensatory damages ranging from loss of wages to medical bills. To recover punitive damages, the defendant party must be found to have acted with gross negligence or intentional misconduct. A party can sue to recover up to two million dollars if they show that the defendant party was motivated by financial gain, and that the managing director, agent, or officer in charge of decision making was aware of the dangerous nature of the conduct.
It is impossible to fully recover the loss of a loved one who died because of a product placed on the market, advertised to be safe. A wrongful death suit can provide financial recovery to the family and hold the manufacturer responsible for their actions. The Florida product liability attorneys of Friedman, Rodman and Frank are experienced litigators who have dealt with several wrongful death and product liability actions. If you or a loved one have taken dietary supplements with DMAA and experienced severe medical injuries or death, call for a free, confidential consultation with one of our attorneys.
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Thousands of Injuries Caused by All-Metal Hip Implants Cause F.D.A. to Tighten Regulations in Florida and Rest of U.S., South Florida Personal Injury Lawyers Blog, January 18, 2013