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July 13, 2013

What causes acute liver failure? Tylenol!

Tylenol Liver Injuries

Did you know that acetaminophen, the main ingredient in Tylenol and other over the counter medications, can cause serious liver injuries and death? Tylenol.jpegAcetaminophen poisoning is the reason for more calls to poison control centers than any other drug; and over 40% of the cases of acute liver failure in the USA result from acetominophen poisoning. Our research indicates that there are approximately 450 deaths per year in the USA as a result of acetominophen poisoning.

The problem is that the recommended dose of Tylenol is extremely close to the toxic dose. In other words, there is no fudge factor, and if a consumer takes the recommended dose of Tylenol and then takes another product with acetaminophen, then they will have unknowingly taken a toxic dose and be at high risk for acute liver failure. If a consumer takes a prescription dose of acetominophen and then also takes a Tylenol pill, they could put themselves at serious risk of acute liver failure and death.

Millions of people take Tylenol every day. But most of those people don't know that acetaminophen is the leading cause of acute liver failure in the United States. Tylenol is marketed to the public as a safe over the counter drug. Its manufacturers have not provided adequate warnings to the public about its potential dangers.

If you or someone you love has been hospitalized with sudden liver failure, required a liver transplant or died from taking Tylenol or any other drug containing acetaminophen, please call us for a free consultation to discuss your legal rights. The phone call is free and you will never get a bill from us. We only get paid if we obtain compensation for you.

Common over-the-counter medications that contain acetaminophen include:

• Most types of Tylenol
• Alka-Seltzer Cold or Plus
• Allerest
• Anacin
• Bayer Select
• Benadryl Allergy or Cold
• Dimetapp Cold
• Excedrin
• Midol
• NyQuil and DayQuil
• Robitussin
• Sudafed Cold or Sinus
• Theraflu Cold or Sinus

Symptoms from taking a toxic amount of acetaminophen or Tylenol can include nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, confusion, rash, hives, and difficulty breathing or swallowing. If you experience any of these symptoms after taking Tylenol then you should go to the emergency room immediately.

Tylenol Liver Damage Lawsuits

For years the maker of Tylenol has told consumers that Tylenol is the "safest" pain reliever on the market and is the "most recommended" pain reliever by doctors and hospitals. Yet it has been known for some time that acetaminophen can cause liver damage and liver failure.

Because Tylenol is marketed to consumers as a safe medication without adequate warnings and the high number of serious liver injuries from Tylenol, our lawyers are investigating, and filing lawsuits against the makers of Tylenol on behalf of individuals who suffer liver damage after taking Tylenol.

If you or a loved one has been hospitalized, need a liver transplant, or died after taking Tylenol or another drug containing acetaminophen, contact our lawyers today at 888-213-8140. There are time limits on claims, so act quickly - the call is free.

The Food and Drug Administration has even acknowledged the problem and stated that "In some individuals, taking just a small amount more than the recommended total daily dose of acetaminophen (4 grams per day) may lead to liver injury," but has not done an adequate job of informing the public. See 2009 report Acetominophen Overdose and Liver Injury"

June 26, 2013

Energy Drink Lawsuits

Kevin Goldberg appeared on CNBC today to discuss Goldberg, Finnegan & Mester's litigation against Monster Beverage Corporation. Goldberg, Finnegan & Mester represents several families of those killed or injured as a result of energy drink consumption. The firm is also involved in a consumer class action that seeks to force Monster to change its warning label and to stop marketing to children.

These lawsuits are important because some energy drink companies target their marketing at teenagers and young adults; and the warnings on the can are totally inadequate. The public, and specifically, parents of children who consume energy drinks, needs to know and understand that energy drinks can be extremely dangerous for anyone with an underlying heart condition. According to the American Academy of Pedicatrics the stimulants in energy drinks pose health risks and the drinks such as Monster, Rockstar, Red Bull and 5 Hour Energy should never be consumed by kids or teens.

For More information about energy drink lawsuits visit

June 25, 2013

Energy Drink Lawsuit Filed Against Monster Beverage Corp.

Death of Teenager Prompts Second California Wrongful Death Lawsuit Against Monster Beverage Corporation. Complaint Filed.Morris.pdf.

Family seeks Answers, Accountability from Manufacturer; and Hopes to Prevent Future Deaths Due to Energy Drink Consumption By Adolescents

Silver Spring, Maryland--19 year-old Alex Morris suffered a cardiac arrest and died on July 1, 2012. The Alameda County, California Coroner determined that the cause of death was cardiac arrhythmia and cardiomyopathy. The autopsy and toxicity reports confirm that there were no illegal drugs or alcohol involved. Alex consumed at least two 16 oz. cans of Monster Energy Drink in the 24 hours preceding his death, and at least two 16 oz. cans of Monster Energy Drink per day during the three years preceding his death. He started consuming Monster Energy Drink on a regular basis when he was a minor.Alex Morris Photo 1smaller.jpg

The lawsuit was filed by the same team of lawyers that filed a lawsuit on behalf of the family of Anais Fournier, a 14 year old girl who died after consuming Monster Energy Drinks in December 2011. The team includes Kevin Goldberg (Past President of Maryland Association for Justice), of Goldberg, Finnegan & Mester, LLC; Alexander Wheeler and Jason Fowler at the R. Rex Paris Law Firm, and Michael Brown, Michael Blumenfeld and Joe Hovermill at Miles & Stockbridge P.C.

"Our team is committed to holding energy drink companies accountable for the injuries and deaths that their products are causing to young people," said Goldberg. We believe that it is important to get the word out to the public, and especially to parents of young people, that energy drinks can be lethal, particularly to anyone with an undiagnosed, underlying heart condition. The lawsuit alleges strict product liability, failure to warn and negligence in the design, sale and manufacturing of the product, among other claims.

The lawsuit was brought in Alameda County, California by Alex Morris's biological mother, Paula Morris, who explains that "it is hard for all of Alex's family and friends to relive the terrible moments of his death, but we cannot be silent while more seemingly-healthy young adults like Alex are putting their lives at risk, and we do not want any other parents to experience the devastation of losing their child." Ms. Morris explained that in his too short life, he had an incredible impact on all those who knew him. "Alex was compassionate, funny, smart, but most of all he lived a life full of love and courage. He was always there for his friends in hard times, and always spoke out for what was right. We know that he would be beside us now calling on Monster to be held accountable, and advocating for more research and regulation of these drinks." Alex is survived by family members Paula Morris, Harvey Yaw and Cory Pohley.

Alex was born and raised in San Francisco where City Attorney, Dennis Herrera, recently sued Monster Beverage Corporation for marketing to kids, and said "Monster Energy is unique among energy drink makers for the extent to which it targets children and youth in its marketing despite the known risks its products pose to young people's health and safety."

Despite a continuing barrage of mounting scientific evidence that Energy Drinks are dangerous, they continue to be marketed and sold to teenagers and young adults, without any significant regulation by the Food & Drug Administration. Recent evidence includes the following:

• (i) The American Academy of Pediatrics issued a Clinical Report in May 2011 advising that Energy Drinks pose potential health risks because of the stimulants they contain, and should never be consumed by children or adolescents.

• (ii) The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration reported that emergency department visits involving energy drinks increased ten-fold between 2005 and 2009, and doubled from 10,068 in 2007 to 20, 783 in 2011.

• (iii) The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Adverse event reports indicate that as many as 5 deaths may possibly be linked to the consumption of Monster Energy Drink from just April 2009 to May, 2012.

• (iv) A study done by the American Heart Association suggests that consumption of energy drinks can alter the heart rhythm (QT rhythm), cause serious irregular heartbeats, or sudden cardiac death.

• (v) In March 2013 numerous doctors and scientists wrote a letter to the FDA urging that the FDA take prompt action to protect children and adolescents from the dangers of highly caffeinated energy drinks.

• (vi) In April 2013 U.S. Senator Edward J. Markey issued a report titled "What's all the Buzz About" which concluded, among other things, that energy drink companies should stop marketing products to children/teens and provide better labeling.

• (vii) On June 19, 2013 the American Medical Association adopted a policy supporting a ban on the marketing of energy drinks to children under 18.

"Despite the onslaught of scientific evidence that energy drinks are dangerous, the FDA has not taken meaningful action to ban the sale and marketing of energy drinks to young people," said Goldberg. Monster Beverage Corporation seems to target their marketing at teens and young adults.

"Nothing can bring Alex back, but we can tell the world that these drinks can be harmful, and our hope is that discovery in this case will shed light on Monster Beverage Corporation's practices regarding how they market to teenagers, and what they do or do not tell the public and FDA about the safety of their products," added Goldberg.

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Kevin I. Goldberg, Goldberg, Finnegan & Mester, 8401 Colesville Road, # 630, Silver Spring, MD 20910 Phone: (301) 589-2999 x102

May 24, 2013

Construction Accident at Montgomery Mall

Yesterday there was a terrible construction accident at the Montgomery Mall Parking garage. One man was killed and another was apparently seriously injured. Montgomery Mall Construction Accident

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family of the man killed and to the man who was seriously injured.

Construction accidents like this typically occur because safety rules are not followed.

A 50,000 pound slab of concrete collapsed in a parking lot that was under construction. The injured worker was pinned for hours before he was rescued . The contractor for the garage is Whiting-Turner Construction Company. Other sub-contractors may also have been involved in the project.

Under Maryland law the injured worker is entitled to Workman's Compensation Benefits, but will not be permitted to file a full blown lawsuit against his employer for negligent safety practices. The injured construction worker's family should retain an attorney to investigate potential third party claims against co-employees, and negligent third parties other than the employer. Maryland workman's compensation benefits include medical bills, 2/3 of the average weekly wage and permanent impairment compensation.

When a serious contruction accident occurs in Maryland, the Maryland Department of Labor will investigate and issue the appropriate safety violations which can include fines.

May 14, 2013

Injury Lawsuit Against Maryland Live! Casino

Our firm handles injury claims and lawsuits against Maryland Live! Casino which is located in Arundel Mills, in Hanover Maryland. The casio recently opened its doors to the public, and there will surely be a lot of legal claims against Maryland Live. Maryland Live.png This is because safety policies and procedures have not been in place for any significant period of time. Claims related to card dealer mistakes and improper casino payments are also likely because Maryland Live card dealers are not experienced card dealers for the most part, and are still learning their craft.

If you are injured at a Maryland Casino call us at 888-213-8140.

Claims against the casino can involve personal injuries that occur at the casino (or the Maryland Live parking lots), and other claims involving gambling losses and Maryland Live!'s failure to pay out on money owed. If you are injured at a Maryland Casino it is important to talk to an attorney that understands potential legal issues involved. Ben Franklins.jpg

One issue to consider is whether an injury or death claim against a Maryland Casino such as Maryland Live! are actually claims against the State of Maryland. The Casino is regulated by the State and receives State Funding, but it is run by private investors,and is likely owned by "PPE Casino Resorts Maryland, LLC" which is located in Baltimore, Maryland. Nobody knows hte answer to this question yet because it has not been litigated. To be safe, it is a good idea to give notice to the State of Maryland pursuant to the State Tort Claims Act and also to give notice to the appropriate local government pursuant to the Local Government Tort Claims Act. According to the State Department of Assesment and Taxation Website, there are at least 3 legal entities with the name Maryland Live in it: "Maryland Live" "Maryland Live! Casino" "Maryland Live Holdings, LLC" and "Maryland Live Holdings Equity Investor, LLC"

May 5, 2013

Z-Pack Users----Don't Consume Energy Drinks!!

Here is some friendly consumer advice from Goldberg, Finnegan & Mester, LLC. If you (or your children) have been prescribed the Z-Pak by your doctor, DON'T CONSUME ENERGY DRINKS WHILE TAKING THE Z-PAK. Why do I say this? Z Pack.jpg Both energy drinks and Azithromycin likely cause disturbances in heart rhythm (QT interval). The FDA has not yet made this connection, but the scientific studies are indeed out there that both energy drinks and Azithromycin disturb heart rhythm. Seems to me that consumption of both at the same time could be a very deadly combination.

Here are the facts that I base this on:

1. On March 12, 2013 the FDA warned that Azithromycin (aka Z-Pack, Zithromax, Z Max) can lead to deadly heart rhythms for some. The FDA Warning explains that Z Pack "...can cause abnormal changes in the electrical activity of the heart that may lead to a potentially fatal irregular heart rhythm." Then on May 2, 2013 an article was published in the New England Journal of Medicine titled "Cardiovascular Risks with Azithromycin and Other Antibacterial Drugs." The article explained that a 2012 observational study showed that the risk of death from any cause and from cardiovascular causes associated with Azithromycin is greater than those associated with Amoxicillin.

2. In March 2013 there was a scientific research presentation at the American Heart Association Meeting in New Orleans indicating that "Energy Drinks" may increase blood pressure and disturb the heart rhythm. Apparently, the data presented shows that the QT interval was 10 milliseconds longer for those who consumed energy drinks. (If the QT interval is too long it can cause irregular heartbeat or death).energy drinks pic of cans.jpg

3. According to the New York Times, doctors wrote 55.3 Million prescriptions for Azithromycin (Z Pack) last year.

4. According to a Congressional Report about Energy Drinks, Energy drinks such as Monster, Red Bull, Full Throttle and Rockstar Energy Drink are consumed by 31% of 12-17 year olds, and by 22% of 25-35 year olds. Basically, a ton of children and young adults are drinking Energy Drinks and Energy Shots.

5. There has been an astronomical rise in Emergency Room Visits due to energy drink consumption in the past several years. In fact the number doubled from 2007 to 2011. (10,068 in 2007 and 20,783 in 2011 according to a Government Report). See SAMSA Report.

6. Since both the Z-Pack and Energy Drinks both cause a rise in the heart's QT interval, it seems to me that anyone who is on the Z-Pak (Azrithromycin) should not consume energy drinks while taking the pills (Could be a "double whammy").

I have no idea why the FDA and other medical societies/ government agencies have not already warned about this combined danger. Maybe I am wrong about this connection. I doubt it though.

I'm concerned that the left hand at the FDA that claims to be looking into the dangers of Energy Drinks, is not talking to the right hand at the FDA that has already warned of the dangers of Azithromycin. The evidence is out there but those we count on to protect us (FDA/Congress) seem to have not yet connected the dots (sound familiar?).

My advice to friends, family and anyone else who will listen----DON'T CONSUME ENERGY DRINKS WHILE ON Z PACK!!!

March 1, 2013

Transvaginal Mesh Injuries--Recent $11.11 Million Dollar Verdict in New Jersey

What is Transvaginal Mesh?

Thousands of women have been treated with transvaginal mesh products since 2002 and many have suffered injuries as a result. These products have been used since about 2002 to treat "Stress Urinary Incontinence" (SUI) and "Pelvic Organ Prolapse", also known as (POP). The trans vaginal mesh procedure was touted as an easier and safer alternative to hysterectomy surgery. Hundreds of thousands of women have had the procedure to treat stress urinary incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse. FDA Warning.jpg

Stress Urinary Incontinence is basically when urine leaks during physical activity such as running, coughing, sneezing or laughing). Pelvic Organ Prolapse (POP) is basically when the bladder falls from its normal position in the tummy and pushes against the vaginal walls. This often occurs after childbirth or surgery. Many of those who had the procedure later complained of complications including pain, infection, excessive bleeding; and many had to have follow up surgeries.

The Problems with Transvaginal Mesh

Scientific studies have found that women treated with vaginal mesh have a much higher likelihood of developing bladder perforation, urinary incontinence, and also that many women needed follow-up surgeries to correct these problems. The FDA (with the Cetner for Devices and Radkological Health) has also recognized the problems and in July 2011 issued a report titled Urogynecologic Surgical Mesh: Update on the Safety and Effectiveness of Transvaginal Placement for Pelvic Organ Prolapse confiming the concerns in the scientific studies. The side effects of transvaginal mesh include the following:

• Mesh Erosion of the vaginal skin
• Pain during sexual intercourse
• Recurrence of Pelvic Organ Prolapse
• Urinary Incontinence (peeing on yourself)
• Internal Bleeding and Infection

FDA Action---Are they part of the problem or part of the solution?

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been monitoring the problem with Transvaginal Mesh. In fact, in 2008 the FDA issued an alert to tell patients and doctors that ladies with vaginal mesh were suffering a high rate of complications. From January 2008 to December 2010 there were nearly 3,000 reports of injuries and/or death from linked to transvaginal mesh used for pelvic organ prolapse (POP) or Stress Urinary Incontinence (SUI). What is now clear is that transvaginal mesh was not properly tested before it was sold to consumers. The various manufacturers knew that the mesh product was very good at treating hernias, and therefore assumed that it would also be an excellent product when surgically placed in the vagina. The manufacturers pushed the product through the FDA's expedited 510(k) approval process which does not require testing since the mesh was similar to the mesh used to treat hernias. This presumption has proven wrong, and as a result of transvaginal mesh manufacturers rush to get their product to the market, literally thousands of women have suffered life altering injuries. The FDA issued an Updated Alert in July 2011 in which it states

"Based on an updated analysis of adverse event reports reported to the FDA and complications described in the scientific literature, the FDA identified surgical mesh for transvaginal repair of POP as an area of continuing serious concern...The FDA is issuing this update to inform you that serious complications associated with surgical mesh for transvaginal repairs of POP are not rare."

February 2013 ---First Jury Verdict in Vaginal Mesh Case

The first Vaginal Mesh Lawsuit went to trial in New Jersey and the jury returned a verdict on February 25, 2013 of compensatory damages in the amount of $3.35 Million Dollars in compensatory damages against Johnson & Johnson, and $7.76 million in punitive damages for a total vaginal mesh verdict of $11.11 Million Dollars. While our firm did not handle this particular case, the verdict is important because it provides insight as to the potential value of vaginal mesh cases. Of course every case is different and the outcome in one case does not guarantee the outcome in any other case. That said, there are over 1,800 other vaginal mesh lawsuits pending throughout the USA and I am sure that vaginal mesh manufacturers such as Johnson and Johnson, C.R. Bard, Mentor, Boston Scientific, Gynecare, Tyco, Covidien, and American Medical Systems will have to take this large verdict into consideration as the decide whether to litigate or settle future transvaginal mesh lawsuits. The case involved a 47 year old lady from South Dakota who had a transvaginal mesh product called Ethicon Gynecare Prolift. The jury found that Ethicon failed to warn the patient's surgeon of the risks associated with Prolift vaginal mesh and that the defendant also improperly marketed the device.

Call Us For A Free Case Evaluation From A Female Intake Specialist 888-213-8140

If you or someone you love has been injured as a result of a Pelvic Mesh product, then call us at 888-213-8140 to discuss your legal rights.

January 13, 2013

Mr. Yuck and Energy Drinks---Poison Control Centers Report 3,147 Energy Drink Exposures in 2012

Remember Mr. Yuck? Well, Poison Control Centers are now tracking reports of calls related to energy drink exposures, and the 2012 data is disturbing.


Poison Control Centers in the USA apparently received 3,147 reports of exposures to energy drinks, and that well over half of those reports were for children 18 and younger. This data was compiled by the National Poison Data System which is the only comprehensive poisoning exposure surveillance database in the USA. This data, coupled with the numerous adverse event reports that the Food and Drug Administration has received related to energy drinks is convincing! Energy Drinks are dangerous and can cause serious injuries or death for certain individuals---In particular, anyone with an underlying heart condition should not drink any energy drinks at all.

Poison Control Centers throughout the United States are telling people to use caution and common sense when consuming Energy Drinks and related products. The American Association of Poison Control Centers Website Reports that

"The American Academy of Pediatrics has concluded that "caffeine and other stimulant substances contained in energy drinks have no place in the diets of children and adolescents."

If you are concerned that you are having an adverse reaction after consuming an energy drink such as Monster Energy Drink, Red Bull, Rock Star or 5 Hour Energy, then you should seek medical attention immediately. The Poison Control Center's cautionary alert on energy drinks indicates that drinking too many energy drinks or drinking them too fast can cause increased heart rate, altered heart rhythm, chest pain, dehydration, seizures, kidney problems, increased blood pressure, mood changes and other symptoms. You can also report the Energy Drink Injury Incident to the Poison Control Center by calling 1-800-222-1222.

If you want to learn more about the dangers of energy drinks, visit the Goldberg, Finnegan & Mester, LLC Website at

November 11, 2012

Maryland Car Accident Statistics

Do you have any idea how many fatal car accidents there are in the State of Maryland?

In 2010 there were just 493 fatalities in Maryland and this was 56 fewer than in 2009.

According to the MVA Website, between 2003 - 2007 there were 575-600 fatal crashes per year. In 2010 32,885 people died in car crashes throughout the USA. It is interesting to note that the number of fatal car accidents is actually going down in Maryland and throughout the USA. This is most likely because of enhanced safety features on vehicles, and less people are driving. It may also be due to the fact that fewer people are driving drunk. According to the federal government, drunk driving fatalities declined by about 4.9% in 2010.

If you or someone you love is involved in a fatal car crash in Maryland, there are things that you should do to protect your rights. Hiring a lawyer immediately after a fatal crash is a great idea, but many families do not do this because they are overwhelmed by grief and other stressors including planning the funeral. A lawyer can be helpful in making sure that a proper investigation of a fatal car crash is done. A lawyer can also evaluate whether the vehicle needs to be preserved to investigate a product liability case.
Car Image.jpg

Families who lose loved ones in car crashes in Maryland should also know that there will almost always be $2,500.00-$10,0000 in Personal Injury Protection Benefits available, and this will be paid out as soon as the estate is set up. A lawyer can be helfpul in expediting this process, and many lawyers do not charge an attorney fee for helping with the PIP Claim.

November 1, 2012

Attention Gymrats---Some Dietary Supplements Can Be Dangerous!

Dietary Supplements such as Jacked (aka Jack3d) and OxyElite Pro can be dangerous because they contain DMAA (dimethylamylamine). The Food and Drug Administration has received 42 adverse event reports on products containing DMAA, products containing DMAA have been banned from US Army bases, and Canada has banned DMAA products. Gym.jpg Yet products containing DMAA are still apparently available at stores in the USA. Therefore, we are warning our friends, family and clients not to use any dietary supplements containing DMAA.

The FDA is currently investigating the safety of DMAA (dimethylamylamine). There are concerns that DMAA products may be linked to liver failure, heart attacks, loss of consciousness, rapid heartbeat and even death. The products containing DMAA are generally marketed as "dietary supplements" and are therefore not regulated or pre-approved by the FDA.

In April 2012 the FDA issued warning letters to 10 manufacturers and distributors of products containing DMAA (sample warning letter). The FDA position is that before products containing DMAA are marketed to the public, the companies that make the products must provide evidence of safety to the FDA which they apparently had not done. Unfortunately, Federal Law is a bit murky in this area and it gives the makers of OxyELITE and Jack3d and other supplements wiggle room. The applicable law is the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994 (DSHEA). The FDA position is that synthetically produced DMAA is not a "dietary ingredient." and therefore the manufacturers/marketers must establish that it is safe. Some of the products referenced in the FDA DMAA warning letters are: Biorhythm SSIN Juice, Lean Efx, SPirodex, PWR, Napalm, Code Red, Hemo Rage Black, Lipo-6, MethylHex 4, Nitric Blast, Oxy Elite Pro, and Jack3D.DMAA Products.jpg

In an Article on WebMD, Pieter Cohen, MD, an internist and Harvard Medical School Professor, says "It is more potent than ephedra, and ephedra is already removed from the market......At best DMAA is a waste of money and at worst it can damage your health."

The bottom line is that weightlifters, gym rats, and athletes should not use products containing DMAA. If you or anyone you know is injured as a result of using a dietary supplement please contact us at (301) 589-2999. We are investigating product liability, negligence and wrongful death claims resulting from the use of dietary supplements containing DMAA.

October 19, 2012

First Wrongful Death Lawsuit Filed Against Monster Energy For Death of a Minor Child

Goldberg, Finnegan & Mester, LLC has been investigating the dangers of energy drinks for several months now, and on October 17, 2012 filed (with local counsel) what is believed to be the first wrongful death lawsuit against Monster Energy in California for the death of a minor child. The firm is interested in speaking with others who believe they suffered serious injuries such as heart attacks and strokes after consuming caffeinated energy drinks. Call us at 888-213-8140 energy drinks pic of cans.jpg

The energy drink lawsuit was filed in Riverside County California on behalf of a 14 year old Hagerstown, Maryland child, Anais Fournier, who died after consuming two cans of Monster Energy Drink within 24 hours. A copy of the lawsuit is located at: Click here to see the Complaint.. The case was filed with co-counsel in California---Alex Wheeler and The R. Rex Paris Law Firm filed the lawsuit and it is anticipated that Kevin I. Goldberg will be moved in pro hac vice.

If you or someone you know has suffered a serious injury after consuming energy drinks contact us at 888-213-8140 for a free phone consultation about your legal rights.

Anais Fournier's story was reported on NBC's The Today Show in March 2012 and the episode can be seen here.

The story was also reported on Anderson Cooper's show "Anderson Live"

Anais Fournier was at home watching a movie when she went into cardiac arrest last December. Unconscious, Anais was rushed to the hospital. In an effort to save her life, doctors put Anais in an induced coma to reduce the brain swelling. Six days later she was removed from life support. The cause of death was caffeine toxicity according her doctors, the autopsy and death certificate.

Anais had consumed two 24-oz. Monster Energy drinks in a 24-hour period, the last drink just hours prior to her death. The two drinks combined are believed to have contained approximately 480 milligramsof known caffeine, the equivalent of almost 14 cans of Coca-Cola. The FDA requires soft-drinks contain no more than .02% or 71.5 mg per 12 oz of caffeine. However, Monster Energy's caffeine content is not regulated by the FDA because it is considered a "dietary supplement," and not a food, subject to FDA's caffeine restrictions, and the 24 ounce cans of Monster Energy do not specifically disclose the amount of caffeine. In addition to caffeine, like many other energy drinks, Monster Energy contains guarana and taurine, stimulants that contain caffeine or produce similar effects on the cardiac muscles. Monster Energy Drink also contains Panax Ginseng which is an herbal supplement that, according to the National Institute of Health's Medline Website, should not be consumed with caffeine.

The family filed a lawsuit today against Monster Energy for failing to warn about the product's dangers. The case was filed in California Superior Court (Riverside County). The Case Caption is Wendy Crossland and Richard Fournier, individually and as surviving parents of Anais Fournier v. Monster Beverage Corporation, Case No. RIC 1215551.

"I was shocked to learn the FDA can regulate caffeine in a can of soda, but not these huge energy drinks, said Anais' mother Wendy Crossland. "With their bright colors and names like Monster, Rockstar, and Full Throttle, these drinks are targeting teenagers with no oversight or accountability. These drinks are death traps for young, developing girls and boys, like my daughter, Anais."

"Nothing will replace the love and vitality of Anais. I just want Monster Energy to know their product can kill," added Crossland.

According to the Center for Food Safety Adverse Event Reporting System at the FDA, there have been six deaths and 15 hospitalizations reported associated with Monster Energy Drink since 2009.

According to a November, 2011 report by the Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), there has been a tenfold increase in emergency department visits associated with energy drinks between 2004 and 2009, totaling more than 16,000 visits in 2008, and sales have increased 240 percent during the same period.

In fact, in 2010, the state of Virginia banned the use of energy drinks such as Red Bull, Monster and Rockstar by student-athletes during high school football practices and games after noticing an increase in emergency room visits associated with the products.

"Monster, with their targeted marketing practices and promotion of energy drinks to teenagers, put profits over the safety of America's youth," said attorney Kevin Goldberg, of Goldberg, Finnegan, and Mester, in Silver Spring, Maryland. "Nothing can bring Anais back, but we can tell the world these energy drinks are harmful." Kevin Goldberg was the 2009-2010 President of the Maryland Association for Justice, and is one of the attorneys representing Anais Fournier's parents.

"Our hope is discovery in this case will shed light on Monster Corporation's practices regarding what they do or do not tell the public and FDA about the safety of their products," added Goldberg. The lawsuit alleges strict product liability, failure to warn and negligence in the design, sale and manufacturing of the product, among other claims.

"I want Anais' life to send a loud and clear message to today's youth that energy drinks can kill," added Crossland. "I would like nothing more than to have these drinks regulated by the FDA and ban the sale to minors."

Anais had believed organ donation was important. Her right kidney and pancreas were able to save the life of a woman in her forties. Her left kidney and liver saved a retired male nurse in his sixties. Her corneas were able to give two people who were blind the gift of sight. Just fourteen years old, Anais passed away December 23, 2011 and is survived by her parents, her twin brother, Dorian, and younger sister, Jade.

There have been numerous articles in peer reviewed medical journals about the dangers of energy drinks including:

Pediatrics--"Health Effects of Energy Drinks on Children, Adolescents and Young Adultspeds 2009-3592 full.pdfSteinke.Effect Consumption on Hemo.pdf

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Kevin Goldberg, Goldberg, Finnegan & Mester, 1010 Wayne Avenue # 950, Silver Spring, MD 20910 Phone: (301) 589-2999 x102.

October 15, 2012

Fungal Meningitis Legal Update

Our medical legal team is providing free phone consultations to anyone concerned about the fungal meningitis outbreak. As of October 15, 2012 the CDC reports that there are 214 confirmed cases, have been 15 deaths, and cases come from 15 different states.

Today the Food and Drug Administration issued a Statement on the Fungal Meningitis Outbreak. The FDA reports that a new product manufactured by the New England Compounding Center (NECC) has been associated with possible meningitis and/or infections--that is triamcinolone acetonide. This product is another injectable steroid similar to the methylprednisolone acetate which was previously believed to be the only culprit. The FDA also reports that patients administered a drug made by NECC and used in open heart surgery to paralyze heart muscles may possibly be associated with Aspergillus fumigatus infections.

The FDA is advising health care providers to stop using NECC products for the time being. Doctors are being told by the FDA to contact patients who were given NECC injectable products and let them know of the possible risk of an infection. Patients who received NECC injectable products and who experience symptoms of infection should see a medical doctor or report to the emergency room right away.

The symptoms of meningitis include fever, headache, stiff neck, nausea and vomitting, light sensitivity, and altered mental state. Symptoms for the other infections which could be possibly linked to NECC products include fever, swelling, increased pain, redness, eye discharge, chest pain, and surgical site drainage. Doctors are asked to report any adverse events following the use of NECC products to the FDA Medwatch Program at 800-332-1088.

The CDC is having a phone conference for physicians on Tuesday October 16, 2012 called Fungal Meningitis Guidance for Clinicians at 2:00 PM EST. The call in number for this is 888-791-6180 (passcode 1281914). We suggest that patients diagnosed with fungal meningitis and their loved ones may want to call in for this phone call in order to be sure they are knowledgeable of the most up to date medical information about the meningitis outbreak.

Our legal team is investigating product liability, negligence, and wrongful death claims relating to the fungal meningitis outbreak. Call us at 301-589-2999

October 4, 2012

Fungal Meningitis Outbreak in Maryland and Surrounding States

The CDC has reported a fungal meningitis outbreak, and has linked the problem to epidural steroid injections used to treat back pain. Needle.jpg35 cases have been reported with cases in Maryland, Virginia, NC, TN and Florida. Victims who have contracted the meningitis have died and others are seriously injured. If you or a loved one have received injections for back pain and have odd symptoms such as headaches, dizziness or difficulty walking you should contact your doctor right away.

We have learned that New England Compounding Center in Framingham Mass apparently voluntarily recalled three lots of 80 mg injections of methylprednisolone acetate (PF).

You may wonder, what is meningitis? Meningitis is a medical condition when the spine becomes inflamed due to bacteria and/or viruses. The fungal meningitis that is the subject of this particular outbreak is not believed to be contagious from person to person. That said, however, the fungal meningitis condition is difficult to treat. It is often found in those with compromised immune systems such as cancer patients and individuals who are HIV positive.

NBC News has reported that 35 people have been diagnosed in this outbreak and 5 of them have died.

Goldberg Finnegan & Mester is evaluating product liability cases relating to this fungal meningitis outbreak in Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. Call us at 301-589-2999 x102.

September 18, 2012

Don't Eat Those Mangoes

The Food and Drug Administration has warned consumers not to eat mangoes produced by Agricola Daniella because Salmonella has been found in their mangoes. The Center for Disease control has indicated that there has been an outbreak in salmonella cases in the USA with 105 salmonella diagnosis in 16 states. Daniella-Mangoes.jpg


Salmonella is an illness often associated with food poisoning. Infants, the elderly and children are most at risk for acquiring salmonella. The symptoms include diarrhea, fever and stomach aches about 12-72 hours after the infection sets in. Salmonella can spread from the intestine to other body systems including the blood stream. It is a serious illness that can cause death if not treated properly. If you or your family members have signs or symptoms of salmonella, you should immediately call your doctor.

Legal cases related to food poisoning in fruits and vegetables such as salmonella are, essentially, product liability cases. Ideally, it is important to save/preserve the food that was contaminated and have it tested (a lawyer can help with this process). The causes of action to be considered for most food poisoning cases include: negligence, strict liability failure to warn, breach of warranty of fitness, and violation of consumer protection statutes. If you or someone you care about has suffered an injury as a result of consuming contaminated food (often fruit or meat), call Goldberg, Finnegan & Mester, LLC at 888-213-8140. We provide a free phone consultation regarding your food bourne illness legal claim.

September 6, 2012

Energy Drinks Are Dangerous--Especially to those with underlying heart conditions

Energy Drinks such as Monster Energy, Rockstar, and Redbull can be extremely dangerous to individuals who have any sort of underlying heart condition. If you or someone you love suffered a heart attack after consuming an energy drink, call us at 888-213-8140 for a free telephone consultation. We believe that energy drink manufacturers may be responsible for injuries and deaths caused by their products because they do not properly warn consumers of the possible dangerous effects, and many companies seem to market directly to children.

There is no doubt that the combination of caffeine, guarana and other herbals supplements in these energy drinks can cause the heart to beat faster. There are documented cases of children having cardiac arrhythmias and/or heart attacks as a result of consuming energy drinks. The Official Journal Of The American Academy of Pediatrics published an article titled "Health Effects of Energy Drinks on Children, Adolescents and Young Adults in 2011. The article concludes that

Energy Drinks have no therapeutic benefit and consuption of the drinks may put some children at risk for serious adverse health effects; (2) energy drinks typically have high levels of caffeine, taurine, and guarana, which have stimulant properties and cardiac and hematologic activity, but manufacturers claim that energy drinks are nutritional supplements which shields them from the caffeine limits imposed on sodas and the safety and testing labeling required of pharmaceuticlas, (3) energy drinks contain other ingredients which are understudied and are not regulated, (4) youth aimed marketing and risk taking adolescent developmental tendencies combine to increase overdose potential (5) high consumption is suggested by self report surveys but is underdocumented in children and (6) interactions between compounds, additive and dose depenedent effects, long term consequences, and dangers assocaited with risky behavior in children remain to be determined.

In my opinion, The theories of liability for holding energy drink companies legally responsible for the injuries they cause may include product liability claims, negligence claims, consumer protection violation claims, failing to warn consumers of dangers, and negligent marketing of their product.

Our lawyers are evaluating claims related to injuries caused by energy drink consumption. Call us at 888-213-8140 for a free telephone consultation.