Reporting Steve Large
LOS ANGELES (CBS13) – USC is on the defensive as one of the school’s former football players says team doctor’s pumped enough painkillers into his body that he had a heart attack.
The accusations against USC are alarming.
The school’s football team doctors allegedly injected enough painkillers into former Trojans starting defensive end Armond Armstead on game days that he eventually suffered a heart attack at just 20 years old.
Heart specialist Dr. Shephal Doshi says Armstead’s claim would be unusual.
“It is pretty rare for a young person to get these drugs and develop a heart attack from them, and you have to think of other causes,” said Doshi.
Armstead filed the lawsuit against the school and the distributor of the painkilling drug Toradol, claiming the school and its doctors should have known the painkillers were “intended solely to treat acute pain, and were restricted in terms of frequency, duration and dosage by the manufacturer.”
And, Toradol “was not to be used for chronic pain management, and that using (it) for such purpose with respect to plaintiff Armond K. Armstead exposed him to an increased risk of heart attack or stroke.”
The 6-foot-5-inch Elk Grove native, who went to Pleasant Grove High School, had a heart attack in 2011.
USC medical records show doctors injected Armstead 10 times in a three-month period, allegedly leading up to his heart failure.
Armstead’s former coach had no sense of any medical issues while he was a player at Pleasant Grove.
“We didn’t have any sense of anything while he was here. Obviously he was a fantastic athlete,” said Joe Cattolico.
Armstead had hoped choosing USC for college would lead to an NFL team drafting him.
Instead, he claims the school killed that dream and nearly killed him.