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4 Prescription Drug Errors That Cause Serious Harm

Posted on in Medical Malpractice

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_140996341.jpgPrescription drugs are only available by doctor’s order for a reason - they can be dangerous if not used correctly. Patients rely on their medical providers to provide them with the correct prescriptions to treat their conditions while doing the least harm possible. Unfortunately, when mistakes are made regarding prescription medications, the consequences can be severe. Some patients may suffer serious harm, including wrongful death as a result of these careless mistakes. In some cases, these errors can amount to medical malpractice. If you or a loved one have been harmed due to a prescription drug error, it is best to contact an attorney as soon as you become aware. 

What Prescription Drug Mistakes Put Patients in Danger?

Taking your prescription medications exactly as your doctor has instructed is typically good advice. Doctors and nurse practitioners are held to a high standard of care in treating patients and should avoid certain mistakes. However, if your doctor has made a serious mistake, then following his instructions could put you in danger. You may be able to bring a claim against your prescriber in these circumstances: 

  • Allergies - If your prescriber should have known about your allergy and prescribed you a medication that you reacted to anyway, she may be liable. Allergic reactions vary significantly in severity, but the most serious reactions can quickly result in death. 

  • Interactions - There are some medications and classes of medications that cannot be combined without putting a patient at risk for a potentially lethal reaction. Prescribers are responsible for taking measures to ensure that they do not prescribe a drug that is contraindicated by a different drug the patient is taking. 

  • Dosage - It is extremely important that healthcare providers order the correct dosage of prescription medications. Taking a dosage that is too high may cause unpleasant or dangerous side effects, and taking a dosage that is too low may fail to control a medical condition. In hospital settings, accidental overdoses can occur especially when medications are given intravenously and there is even less room for error. 

  • Wrong drug - Although this is somewhat rare, medical providers do occasionally order the wrong medication entirely by mistake. Being given the wrong medication can have serious adverse effects in some cases, for example, if a medication that lowers blood pressure is given to a patient who already suffers from low blood pressure and is at risk for falls. 

If you suspect that you or your loved one has been harmed by a prescription drug error, you will need to consult both another doctor and an attorney. You may be able to recover compensation from your prescriber. 

Call an L.A. County Medical Malpractice Lawyer

Tahmazian Law Firm, P.C. is committed to holding careless prescribers accountable and recovering compensation for patients who have been harmed. Our experienced Glendale medical malpractice attorneys will advocate for you at every step of the legal process. Call 818-242-8201 for a free consultation. 




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