Coral Gables-based law firm Colson
Hicks Eidson filed a complaint in Federal Court in Miami, Fla. today
on behalf of Plaintiff Eric Rizzo against Defendants USPlabs, LLC and
Vitamin Shoppe Industries, Inc.
According to the complaint, Rizzo suffered injuries, including acute,
non-viral hepatitis and other damage to his liver as a result of
consuming OxyElite Pro tablets and powders, a dietary supplement
marketed to increase muscle mass and weight loss. Rizzo, 40, has been
diagnosed with liver toxicity and permanent liver damage which has
caused serious physical impairment. He suffers from jaundice and has
been unable to work or do anything requiring exertion as a result.
"The plaintiff had no idea this product was dangerous. He and other
consumers were relying on the manufacturer and marketers of the product
to furnish a suitable, safe product," said Mike Eidson, counsel for
Rizzo. "The plaintiff suffered permanent damage sustained to his liver
and through this lawsuit we seek to hold the defendants accountable for
the pain and suffering they have caused as a result of this adulterated
and defective product and teir negligent actions."
"We urge consumers not to buy the product if it has not been removed
from the market and to immediately discard the product if it has been
purchased in the past," Eidson added.
In October 2013, the Food and Drug Administration sent a warning letter
to the Dallas-based manufacturer, USPlabs, LLC, noting that OxyElite Pro
and another dietary supplement had been adulterated because they
contained aegeline, a "new" dietary ingredient that lacks a history of
use or other evidence of safety. Aegeline was used as a substitute for
dimethylamylamine (DMAA), a stimulant used by USPlabs in an earlier
formation of its OxyElite Pro products that can cause heart attacks,
seizures, psychiatric disorders and death. The FDA undertook
administrative actions that eventually resulted in USPlabs ceasing to
manufacture and destroy its products containing DMAA. The company later
reformulated its products substituting DMAA with aegeline.
In November 2013, the Food and Drug Administration ordered USPlabs, LLC,
to recall the products due to a number of cases of acute liver failure
and hepatitis linked to OxyElite Pro products reported in Hawaii and a
number of other states, including one death and one patient requiring a
liver transplant and others awaiting liver transplants.
Rizzo, a South Florida resident, purchased the supplements from The
Vitamin Shoppe retail locations, a specialty retailer, in Miami-Dade and
Broward counties in or around July 2013 and November 2013.
The Complaint asserts negligence and strict liability, including failure
to exercise reasonable care and failure to warn consumers of the
potential risk of injury associated with the supplement.
About Colson Hicks Eidson:
The Law Firm of Colson Hicks Eidson is a trial firm with more than 40
years of experience handling local, national and international
litigation. Partners at the firm have had the distinction of holding the
following offices: President of the 60,000-member American Association
for Justice; President of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers;
President of the Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers; President of the Dade
County Bar Association; President of the Miami-Dade Florida Association
of Women Lawyers; United States Attorney for the Southern District of
Florida; and Chairman of the Florida Federal Judicial Nominating
Commission. For more information, call 305.476.7400 or visit www.colson.com.
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