Ohio sues five drugmakers over role in opioid crisis

May 31, 2017

The US state of Ohio on Wednesday sued five major producers of prescription opioid medications, accusing them of lying about the deadly risks the painkillers—at the center of a nationwide addiction crisis—posed to public health.

The suit seeks to hold the companies accountable for harm to patients by blocking the drugs' allegedly deceptive marketing, as well as awarding compensation for the state and for consumers.

Prescription overdoses have hit record levels in the United States, killing more than 15,000 people in 2015 alone, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. West Virginia has also targeted drugmakers over the crisis.

In a statement, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine said the drugmakers had knowingly caused patients to become addicted, with many addicts then switching to heroin and other drugs.

"These drug manufacturers led prescribers to believe that opioids were not addictive, that addiction was an easy thing to overcome, or that addiction could actually be treated by taking even more opioids," DeWine said.

"They knew they were wrong but they did it anyway."

State officials say parts of Ohio are believed to be the hardest hit in the nation by the current opioid addiction crisis, with 2.3 million patients, or about 20 percent of the population, having been prescribed an last year.

The suit names Purdue Pharma, which markets drugs such as OxyContin and Dilaudid, Johnson & Johnson, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, Endo Health Solutions and Allergan.

Explore further: Americans favor treatment, not enforcement, to address opioid crisis

Related Stories

Americans favor treatment, not enforcement, to address opioid crisis

May 23, 2017
Many Americans have been directly touched by the opioid crisis—more than a quarter of Americans and more than a third of millennials, report knowing someone who has been addicted to opioids or prescription painkillers. ...

US opioid crisis at epidemic proportions

May 4, 2017
Many US communities are facing an epidemic of opioid and heroin abuse that is straining resources from police, to jails, to emergency medical personnel and treatment centers.

US communities crumbling under an evolving addiction crisis

March 19, 2017
Of the 2,900 babies born last year in Cabell County, West Virginia, 500 had to be weaned off of opioid dependence.

Pfizer agrees to note addiction risks in opioid marketing

July 6, 2016
The city of Chicago and Pfizer announced an agreement Wednesday committing the drugmaker to disclosing the serious risks of addiction in its marketing of prescription opioid painkillers.

Utah launches campaign to fight opioid abuse, overdoses

April 30, 2017
Utah pharmacists will start putting red stickers on bottles of opioids that warn patients about the risk of overdose and addiction as part of a new awareness campaign to combat painkiller abuses and deaths.

CDC to launch awareness campaign warning of opioid dangers

April 19, 2017
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention plans to launch a new ad campaign to raise awareness about the dangers of opioid addiction.

Recommended for you

Drug for spinal muscular atrophy prompts ethical dilemmas, bioethicists say

December 11, 2017
When the Food and Drug Administration approved the first drug for people with spinal muscular atrophy a year ago, clinicians finally had hope for improving the lives of patients with the rare debilitating muscular disease. ...

FDA's program to speed up drug approval shaved nearly a year off the process

December 7, 2017
Speeding the pace at which potentially lifesaving drugs are brought to market was a rallying cry for Donald Trump as a candidate, and is a stated priority of his Food and Drug Administration commissioner, Dr. Scott Gottlieb. ...

Dangers of commonly prescribed painkillers highlighted in study

December 6, 2017
Commonly prescribed painkillers need to be given for shorter periods of time to reduce the risk of obesity and sleep deprivation, a new study has revealed.

Viagra goes generic: Pfizer to launch own little white pill

December 6, 2017
The little blue pill that's helped millions of men in the bedroom is turning white. Drugmaker Pfizer is launching its own cheaper generic version of Viagra rather than lose most sales when the impotence pill gets its first ...

Surgery-related opioid doses can drop dramatically without affecting patients' pain

December 6, 2017
Some surgeons might be able to prescribe a third of opioid painkiller pills that they currently give patients, and not affect their level of post-surgery pain control, a new study suggests.

Four-fold jump in deaths in opioid-driven hospitalizations

December 4, 2017
People who end up in the hospital due to an opioid-related condition are four times more likely to die now than they were in 2000, according to research led by Harvard Medical School and published in the December issue of ...

1 comment

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

BubbaNicholson
1 / 5 (2) May 31, 2017
250mg of healthy adult male facial skin surface lipid pheromone, the grease on a man's face, taken by mouth remedies opioid addiction without withdrawal symptoms. Lawsuits against innocent drug makers wastes time & resources. Just cure the addicts. 1 man can donate 250mg of his facial skin surface lipid pheromone every 3 days. Obtain the pheromone by spatula or by rubbing the oily face with unleavened bread or chewing gum. Fresh, new, un-chewed chewing gum recently purchased contains preservatives to improve food safety and can be stored at room temperature for months. Use supplied air respirators to collect, handle, & store the skin surface pheromone. The pheromone which is odorless, colorless, & tasteless, is produced by 20,000 glands on the human face. It is these oil producing glands that are highly vascularized, not the skin surface, so blushing surges heated blood to warm the glands. Blush heat increases secretion to kissing surfaces for transfer to a kisser.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.