Prescription Drug Errors
Medical Malpractice Injuries Caused by Medication Errors
Hundreds of thousands of patients have been given the wrong medication. This can occur in a hospital or other medical facility while medications are being administered. Prescription drug errors also occur when a pharmacist provides the wrong medication or the wrong dosage of the correct medication. Prescription drug errors occur when incorrect medication or patient information is input into the computer. Similarly, prescription drug errors can occur if information is misread from the computer.
Prescription drug errors can also happen if a drug is ordered for a patient who is known to have allergies to that family of medications. Additionally, certain medicines react with other medicines in dangerous ways. One medication can increase the effects of another medication. Likewise, one medication can decrease the effectiveness of another medication.
Some patients suffer injuries when medications are not properly monitored or an unsafe dosage is ordered. Liver and kidney problems can occur in these situations.
It is not always a computer information error or Pharmacist error that results in prescription drug errors. Often the physician has illegible handwriting. If a pharmacist or a nurse or pharmacy technician or a pharmacy assistant is unable to read a doctor’s handwriting, prescription drug errors can result.
Related topics in the area of medical malpractice/medical negligence include claims against pharmaceutical companies (drug manufacturers) for either making unsafe drugs or for failing to release information as to adverse or dangerous effects of their drugs. There have also been cases where pharmacists have diluted or otherwise altered prescription drugs or chemotherapy drugs in an effort to generate additional profits.
Certain patients are more susceptible to prescription drug errors. Infants and toddlers tend to have more delicate systems. Aged and less healthy patients can be more likely to suffer adverse effects of prescription drug errors not only because they need the medication but because their systems are often more susceptible to the harmful effects of these errors. Immune systems in children and the elderly can be less well equipped to go without needed medication and/or to handle inappropriate medication or an inappropriate dosage.