Lawsuit: Teenager suffered cardiac arrest after drinking Panera lemonade
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Lawsuit: Teenager suffered cardiac arrest after drinking Panera lemonade

A Pennsylvania teenager is suing Panera Bread after documents state he went into cardiac arrest from drinking its Charged Lemonade.The lawsuit claims Luke Adams, a junior at Gateway High School in the Pittsburgh suburb of Monroeville, purchased a large Mango Yuzu Citrus Charged Lemonade and chicken sandwich on March 9.The lemonade, which Panera has since dropped, is estimated to have 390 mg of caffeine without ice and 237 mg of caffeine with ice.According to the document, Adams, 18, did not know the Charged Lemonade was a “super energy drink with high amounts of caffeine, sugar and guarana.”Adams allegedly went home after eating and drinking, then headed out to see a movie with friends.While at the movie theater, his friends heard Adams making “unusual sounds.” The document says it was around 9:34 p.m. when it was discovered Adams went into sudden cardiac arrest.According to the lawsuit, the cardiac arrest was caused by a type of heart arrhythmia that can be triggered by caffeine. A short time after Adams went into cardiac arrest, two nurses and a cardiologist who happened to be in the theater began CPR.The lawsuit states an AED was able to restore pumping to his heart, though the beat remained irregular.Adams was taken to a hospital, where he suffered two seizures. According to the lawsuit, it was noted by neurology that his seizures were “possibly related to cardiac arrest secondary to caffeine intake from Panera Charged Lemonade.”Cardiology gave a similar report, stating “heavy caffeine intake as a potential trigger” for Adams’ cardiac arrest.The lawsuit states Adams had to have an implantable defibrillator connected to his heart in a preemptive measure.The lawsuit states 30 fluid ounces of the drink exceeds the combined contents of 12 ounces of Red Bull and 16 ounces of Monster Energy Drink.While a large Charged Lemonade could contain 390 mg of caffeine, a large Panera Dark Roast coffee only contains 268 mg in 20 ounces, the lawsuit states.It goes on to say, “Panera Charged Lemonade is defective in design because it is a dangerous energy drink.” The lawsuit says because Panera employees mix the lemonade in-house, it is also defectively manufactured:”This manufacturing is inherently dangerous because Panera Charged Lemonade involves mixing unsafe ingredients at certain concentrations. Knowing this, before and during the marketing sale of Panera Charged Lemonade, defendants knew or should have known the proper quality control for manufacturing and/or mixing the product was crucial to consumer safety.” Lisa Feyes, Adams’ mom, said, “What we do know for sure is that this drink is mixed by the people who work at Panera. And we do know that if it’s not mixed properly and if it’s not stirred – how can you measure how much caffeine someone is getting? It’s not like Red Bull, where it tells you exactly what’s on the can.”Adams said that they had drunk the Charged Lemonade once before and did not have an adverse reaction.He said he recalled seeing about 10 minutes of the movie, but the next thing he remembered was waking up in Allegheny Health Network Forbes Hospital two days later.”I was just surprised,” Adams said. “A little confused, because obviously I had no idea what happened. It was definitely scary.”The lawsuit claims Panera failed to warn people of the dangers and did not market, advertise or sell the Charged Lemonade in-store or on the Panera Bread App as an energy drink.It continues to allege Panera knew or should have known that not advertising the lemonade as an energy drink “increased the risk of causing permanent and catastrophic injuries to consumers.” Elizabeth Crawford, an attorney with Kline & Specter, PC, represents Adams and released the following statement on behalf of Adams and his family:”Luke Adams’ case is a tragic example of why the Panera Charged Lemonade is an inherently dangerous product and needed to be removed. Clearly, the product’s ‘warning’ was ineffective. Luke was a healthy 18-year-old with no underlying medical conditions before he drank one large Panera Charged Lemonade and went into cardiac arrest. He would have died if it was not for the heroic effects of the medical professionals in the movie theater and at the hospital.”Panera has not responded to a request for a statement regarding this lawsuit.

A Pennsylvania teenager is suing Panera Bread after documents state he went into cardiac arrest from drinking its Charged Lemonade.

The lawsuit claims Luke Adams, a junior at Gateway High School in the Pittsburgh suburb of Monroeville, purchased a large Mango Yuzu Citrus Charged Lemonade and chicken sandwich on March 9.

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The lemonade, which Panera has since dropped, is estimated to have 390 mg of caffeine without ice and 237 mg of caffeine with ice.

According to the document, Adams, 18, did not know the Charged Lemonade was a “super energy drink with high amounts of caffeine, sugar and guarana.”

Adams allegedly went home after eating and drinking, then headed out to see a movie with friends.

While at the movie theater, his friends heard Adams making “unusual sounds.” The document says it was around 9:34 p.m. when it was discovered Adams went into sudden cardiac arrest.

According to the lawsuit, the cardiac arrest was caused by a type of heart arrhythmia that can be triggered by caffeine.

A short time after Adams went into cardiac arrest, two nurses and a cardiologist who happened to be in the theater began CPR.

The lawsuit states an AED was able to restore pumping to his heart, though the beat remained irregular.

Adams was taken to a hospital, where he suffered two seizures. According to the lawsuit, it was noted by neurology that his seizures were “possibly related to cardiac arrest secondary to caffeine intake from Panera Charged Lemonade.”

Cardiology gave a similar report, stating “heavy caffeine intake as a potential trigger” for Adams’ cardiac arrest.

The lawsuit states Adams had to have an implantable defibrillator connected to his heart in a preemptive measure.

The lawsuit states 30 fluid ounces of the drink exceeds the combined contents of 12 ounces of Red Bull and 16 ounces of Monster Energy Drink.

While a large Charged Lemonade could contain 390 mg of caffeine, a large Panera Dark Roast coffee only contains 268 mg in 20 ounces, the lawsuit states.

It goes on to say, “Panera Charged Lemonade is defective in design because it is a dangerous energy drink.” The lawsuit says because Panera employees mix the lemonade in-house, it is also defectively manufactured:

“This manufacturing is inherently dangerous because Panera Charged Lemonade involves mixing unsafe ingredients at certain concentrations. Knowing this, before and during the marketing sale of Panera Charged Lemonade, defendants knew or should have known the proper quality control for manufacturing and/or mixing the product was crucial to consumer safety.”

Lisa Feyes, Adams’ mom, said, “What we do know for sure is that this drink is mixed by the people who work at Panera. And we do know that if it’s not mixed properly and if it’s not stirred – how can you measure how much caffeine someone is getting? It’s not like Red Bull, where it tells you exactly what’s on the can.”

Adams said that they had drunk the Charged Lemonade once before and did not have an adverse reaction.

He said he recalled seeing about 10 minutes of the movie, but the next thing he remembered was waking up in Allegheny Health Network Forbes Hospital two days later.

“I was just surprised,” Adams said. “A little confused, because obviously I had no idea what happened. It was definitely scary.”

The lawsuit claims Panera failed to warn people of the dangers and did not market, advertise or sell the Charged Lemonade in-store or on the Panera Bread App as an energy drink.

It continues to allege Panera knew or should have known that not advertising the lemonade as an energy drink “increased the risk of causing permanent and catastrophic injuries to consumers.”

Elizabeth Crawford, an attorney with Kline & Specter, PC, represents Adams and released the following statement on behalf of Adams and his family:

“Luke Adams’ case is a tragic example of why the Panera Charged Lemonade is an inherently dangerous product and needed to be removed. Clearly, the product’s ‘warning’ was ineffective. Luke was a healthy 18-year-old with no underlying medical conditions before he drank one large Panera Charged Lemonade and went into cardiac arrest. He would have died if it was not for the heroic effects of the medical professionals in the movie theater and at the hospital.”

Panera has not responded to a request for a statement regarding this lawsuit.

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