February 23, 2016 — An Orlando-based law firm has filed five lawsuits against Monster Beverage Corp. involving people who consumed highly-caffeinated energy drinks and experienced severe, life-threatening health problems.
Lawyers are now investigating claims from more than 100 people who say they were injured, WESH News reports. Lawsuits claim that energy drinks can cause heart attacks, stroke, kidney failure, and brain damage.
Monster is accused of negligence, defective design, and failing to warn consumers about health risks. Before 2013, the beverages were marketed as “dietary supplements” and did not list the amount of caffeine on the label. According to the complaint:
“Deprived of this important information, consumers were unable to make informed decisions on what they were putting in their body.”
The lawsuits cite a recent study published in JAMA that found drinking just one highly-caffeinated energy drink could cause an unsafe increase in blood pressure and stress hormones within 30 minutes.
One lawsuit was filed by Brian Smith, a man from Washington State who suffered a stroke after drinking four 16-oz cans of Monster Energy in one day — two in the morning and two while driving home from work — containing at least 640-milligrams of caffeine. That evening, he had a severe headache and was hospitalized with a brain hemorrhage, according to the Seattle PI.
Another lawsuit was filed by Robert Grim, a man who drank a can of Monster Energy every day before leaving the house for the last 10 years. In December 2014, he was rushed to the emergency room and hospitalized with stage-4 kidney disease.
Monster is facing a growing number of lawsuits over its energy drinks, including a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of 19 year-old man who died of a heart attack in 2012. He drank two cans of Monster Energy every day for three years. In 2012, Monster was also sued by the family of a 14 year-old girl who died of cardiac arrest after drinking two cans of Monster Energy in quick succession. She had pre-existing heart problems that were exacerbated by caffeine toxicity.
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