North Dakota joins lawsuit against maker of OxyContin

Tennessee joins states suing Oxy Contin maker

Tennessee joins states suing Oxy Contin maker

This story was updated May 15, 2018, at 10:19 p.m. with more information.

"It resulted in large measure from a company's decision to aggressively and deceptively market OxyContin and misrepresent the most serious side effect of opioids-addiction", the suit states.

The lawsuit says Purdue pushed a message of "pseudo-addiction", marketing the idea that people engaged in drug-seeking behavior because they were not receiving enough opioids, and attempted to discredit non-opioid pain relievers by saying medications like aspirin or acetaminophen are riskier for chronic pain.

North Dakota and five other states are filing a lawsuit against a drug maker for overdose deaths. The attorneys general of five other states took similar legal action today against the Stamford, Connecticut-based pharmaceutical giant.

FILE - This Feb. 19, 2013, file photo shows OxyContin pills arranged for a photo at a pharmacy in Montpelier, Vt. Also, Nevada and the other litigating states continue to engage in ongoing settlement discussions with Purdue and other companies.

The Attorney General's Office said in a release Tuesday: "The state alleges that Purdue made unsubstantiated claims regarding the benefits of long-term opioids treatment, and falsely represented that opioid use improved patients' function and quality of life". Nationwide, there were 42,249 opioid overdoses in 2016, including 1,375 opioid-related deaths in Texas. A company spokesman added that the state lawsuits will bring costly and protracted litigation.

Separate litigation involving at least 433 lawsuits by USA cities and counties has been consolidated in a federal court in Cleveland, Ohio.

Florida also sued drugmakers Endo Pharmaceuticals Inc, Allergan, units of Johnson & Johnson and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries and Mallinckrodt, as well as drug distributors AmerisourceBergen Corp, Cardinal Health Inc and McKesson Corp.

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