Product Liability Lawsuits

Paraquat Linked to Parkinson's Disease

An herbicide with life-threatening side effects is still on the market, yet many people are unaware of the possible risks associated with exposure to Paraquat. Aside from immediate symptoms suffered after direct contact with this poisonous herbicide, researchers have also learned that prolonged exposure can lead to more serious side effects than previously known – including the risk of developing a brain disorder known as Parkinson’s Disease.

The law firm of Taylor Martino is currently evaluating individuals who have been directly exposed to Paraquat and have been diagnosed with poisoning symptoms & Parkinson’s Disease.

What is Paraquat?

The Facts About Paraquat Exposure

Paraquat is a popular herbicide that has been used commercially by farmers since the 1960s to control weeds for a variety of crops, especially corn, soybeans, cotton, and grapes. Paraquat is a popular herbicide that has been used commercially by farmers since the 1960s to control weeds around a variety of crops, most notably corn, soybeans, cotton, and grapes. Although Paraquat is now banned (or restricted) in more than 30 countries including Switzerland where the company is based, this toxic weed killer sold under trade names such as Gramoxone, Ortho-Paraquat, Para-SHOT, Parazone, Quick-Quat, Firestorm, and Helmquat among others, remains one of the most popular commercial herbicides around the globe. Manufactured by a Swiss company called Syngenta Group, Paraquat initially gained popularity among farmers as an alternative to RoundUp, to which some weeds are known to develop a resistance to.

 

Although still not entirely banned in the United States, Paraquat is heavily regulated. Several safety measures have been put in place including the removal of Paraquat from commercial markets. Only licensed individuals are allowed access to the herbicide and can use it for farming.

In addition to regulating the use, the U.S. requires that Paraquat contain a blue dye so that it is easy to distinguish from edible liquids, that it also contains a chemical that induces vomiting, which gives off a strong odor. The most common forms of exposure to Paraquat are direct inhalation or ingestion. People can also be exposed via direct contact with skin or coming into contact with plants that have been sprayed by the herbicide.

Paraquat Side Effects

What is Paraquat Poisoning?

Paraquat poisoning is caused by any type of exposure to the chemical, both short and long term. Prolonged exposure has been known to result in death. The most common way that people can be exposed to Paraquat is through inhalation or ingestion. An individual can also suffer from Paraquat poisoning by coming into contact with the skin, whether that be by directly touching the chemical or a plant that has been sprayed.

Symptoms and immediate side effects of Paraquat exposure include:

  • Dehydration and Muscle Fatigue
  • Pain or swelling of the mouth and throat.
  • Elevated Heart Rate and Respiratory Distress
  • Lung Scarring (shortness of breath, fatigue, aching, dry cough)
  • Gastrointestinal distress (vomiting, bloody stool, nausea, diarrhea, etc.)
  • Acute kidney failure (typically distinguished by decreased urinary output)
  • Pulmonary Edema (difficulty breathing, chest pain, cough, fatigue).
  • Liver failure (jaundice, belly pain and swelling)
  • Confusion, Seizures, and Coma
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If you have been exposed to Paraquat through ingestion or inhalation, avoid any further contact with the chemical and seek medical assistance immediately. If your skin has come directly in contact with Paraquat, quickly remove your clothing, wash your entire body, and get medical help as quickly as you can.

Do You Need a Lawyer?

How a Paraquat Lawyer Can Help

Patients injured after taking Paraquat alleged they suffered economic losses as a direct result of the manufacturer’s purported concealment of dangers associated with exposure from the toxic weed killer. An experienced attorney can help evaluate your case and assess your specific damages to get you the maximum compensation you need for your recovery and for your family.

Medical Bills

MEDICAL BILLS FALL UNDER ECONOMIC DAMAGES AND CAN INCLUDE PAST, PRESENT AND ESTIMATED FUTURE MEDICAL EXPENSES AND CO-PAYS FOR TREATMENT, SURGERIES, THERAPIES, NECESSARY MEDICAL EQUIPMENT OR/AND PRESCRIPTION MEDICATIONS.

Punitive Damages

PUNITIVE DAMAGES ARE INTENDED TO PUNISH THE OTHER PARTY FOR INTENTIONAL OR WILLFUL WRONGDOING OR GROSS NEGLIGENCE. THIS CONDUCT MUST GO BEYOND MERE NEGLIGENCE AND IT MUST BE PROVEN BY CLEAR AND CONVINCING EVIDENCE.

Pain & Suffering

PAIN AND SUFFERING FALLS UNDER NON-ECONOMIC OR GENERAL DAMAGES AND COMPENSATES PATIENTS FOR EMOTIONAL DISTRESS RESULTING FROM THEIR INJURY. PAIN AND SUFFERING CAN ALSO INCLUDE LOSS OF COMPANIONSHIP AND DIMINISHED QUALITY OF LIFE.
Paraquat & Parkinsons Disease

How is Paraquat Linked to Parkinson’s Disease?

One very significant risk factor for those who have been directly exposed to Paraquat is the possibility of developing Parkinson’s Disease. Parkinson’s is a neurodegenerative disorder that causes brain cells to die, leading to a decrease in dopamine levels in the brain, thus causing the life-changing symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease. Symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease can affect both motor and non-motor activities.

Symptoms That Affect Movement:

  • Bradykinesia (slowness in voluntary movement and reflexes)
  • Limb rigidity or stiffness (resistance to passive movement)
  • Impaired Balance or Postural Instability
  • Resting Tremors (shaking movement when the muscles are relaxed)
  • Difficulty Walking & Talking as Disease Progresses

Non-Motor Symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease:

  • Apathy & Depression
  • Cognitive Impairment
  • Constipation
  • Insomnia and Other Sleep Disorders

A direct correlation between Paraquat exposure and Parkinson’s disease was discovered by a group of scientists that were a part of the FAME study (Farming and Movement Evaluation). During the study, 110 individuals known to already have Parkinson’s Disease were compared to a control group of over 300 in order to eliminate possible variables. The results confirmed that the theory was true– Parkinson’s can indeed result from herbicide exposure. Syngenta, the Paraquat manufacturer, argued that 110 positive Parkinson’s patients seemed a small number compared to the 80,000 Paraquat users in the broader study. Dr. Caroline Tanner, the lead author of FAME, stated that the 110 individuals with Parkinson’s were not compared to the entire population of 80,000, but only to the control group, and the results were conclusive.

Scientists were able to determine that Paraquat causes Parkinson’s disease through oxidative stress. This phenomenon is caused by an imbalance of free radicals (molecules containing oxygen that have an uneven number of electrons) and antioxidants (molecules that can donate an electron to a free radical without itself becoming unstable). Essentially, oxidative stress occurs when there are too many free radicals for the antioxidants to maintain balance within the body and can cause damage to DNA, fatty tissue, and proteins. The study also discovered that those who use or have used Paraquat develop Parkinson’s 2.5 times more frequently than those who have not used the herbicide.

Paraquat Injury Lawsuits

Do You Need a Paraquat Injury Lawyer?

Makers of herbicides and other chemicals have a duty to provide safe products that are free from defects and that are not unreasonably dangerous. If there are risks of harm associated with a particular product, the manufacturer must also provide adequate warnings.

We believe the risks of Paraquat exposure may have been mitigated by those that value profits over health. When a manufacturer fails to fulfill its duty, it is legally responsible for the injuries and harm caused by its product.

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease as a result of Paraquat exposure, Taylor Martino’s experienced personal injury team is here to help! If you have questions about a paraquat lawsuit, or if you want to speak with an attorney, contact us about your case today!

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Have Questions?

Paraquat Lawsuit FAQ's

Do I qualify for a Paraquat lawsuit?

The best way to determine if you may be eligible to file a paraquat lawsuit is to get a free legal evaluation from a top dangerous product law firm. Taylor Martino has helped thousands of clients across the country get the compensation they deserve by holding dangerous product manufacturers accountable.

Why should I hire a Paraquat lawyer?

If you’re suffering as a result of being exposed to paraquat, filing a lawsuit can help you hold the company that exposed you to paraquat responsible, secure compensation to cover medical bills and additional expenses, as well as spread awareness of the dangers associated with paraquat.

Who is at risk of Paraquat exposure?

Paraquat exposure predominantly affects 1) Farmers, farmworkers, landscapers, and agricultural workers, 2) Residents living in rural areas near farmland that has been sprayed with paraquat, and 3) Professionals that work with or around commercial-grade pesticides.

If you’ve developed symptoms of Paraquat poisoning or Parkinson’s Disease after living near or working on an industrial farm, you may be entitled to compensation.

How much does it cost to file a Paraquat lawsuit?

The legal team at Taylor Martino, P.C. works on a contingency basis, which means you don’t have to pay any fees upfront. If your case is successful, your lawyer will receive a portion of the paraquat settlement or verdict results. We only get paid if you do!

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