generic heart drug recallTwo large Indian manufacturers of generic heart drugs have announced recalls over the last two months totaling more than 100,000 bottles because of serious reported side effects.

According to an article in The New York Times, the recalls are the latest in the string of recent problems involving generic drugs made by Indian manufacturers such as Wockhardt and Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories.

The drug is a beta blocker that treats high blood pressure and heart ailments.

However, the number of recalled bottles is relatively small compared with the 38 million prescriptions for the drug, known generically as metoprolol succinate that were filled in the United States in 2013, according to the research firm IMS Health.

The recalls are classified as Class II by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), meaning that the drugs in question may cause temporary health problems.

These recalls also come at a time when the FDA is taking a closer look at the quality of generic drugs, which now account for more than 80 percent of prescriptions in the United States.

Serious Problems Reported

The Times article quotes Dr. Harry Lever, a cardiologist at the Cleveland Clinic, who said some patients taking a generic version of Toprol XL reported chest pains.

Dr. Lever told the Times that patient after patient complained of chest pains or other symptoms after switching from the brand-name version, made by AstraZeneca, to a generic product, often one manufactured in India.

The doctor said the symptoms went away when patients reverted to the brand-name drug.

Compensation for Victims

Most medications have some type of side effects. However, pharmaceutical companies have a legal obligation to consumers to make drugs that are safe and devoid of any side effects.

Anyone who has suffered serious side effects after taking a particular drug can file a product liability claim against the drug manufacturer seeking compensation for damages including medical expenses, lost wages, hospitalization, pain and suffering and emotional distress.

If you have lost a loved one due to defective drugs, you may be able to file a wrongful death claim against the drug manufacturer as well. In such cases, plaintiffs may also be able to seek punitive damages, especially in egregious cases.

An experienced pharmaceutical liability lawyer will be able to advise victims and their families regarding their legal rights and options.