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N.J. man says heart damaged by Four Loko

March 21, 2011 at 1:02 PM

MAYS LANDING, N.J., March 21 (UPI) -- A New Jersey man is suing the maker of Four Loko, charging the energy drink damaged his heart, his lawyer says.

In the state's first Four Loko lawsuit, filed last week, Michael Mustica, 22, of Knowlton Township says he drank 2 1/2 cans during a visit to Atlantic City in October and fell asleep. When he awoke, his heart was racing and he had difficulty breathing, he said.

He was diagnosed with arrhythmia, "a direct result of consuming Original Four Loko," states the complaint, reported by The Star-Ledger of Newark, N.J.

The suit charges manufacturer Phusion Projects "deceitfully packaged" the beverage to target young people, with no warnings of the dangers of mixing a depressant, alcohol, with a stimulant, caffeine.

Last fall, two dozen New Jersey college students were hospitalized after drinking the beverage, and several states have banned it.

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