When people think about prescription errors and medical malpractice, the first thing they often imagine is a doctor who gives a patient the wrong medication. Maybe the patient needs some medication to help thin blood clots, for example, but they’re given a mild sedative. Instead of clearing the blood clots, those blockages are allowed to persist, which leads to serious complications for the patient.
It’s certainly true that these types of mistakes do happen, but it’s also important to know that all prescription errors aren’t going to look like this. You could also run into serious issues if you’re given the wrong amount of the drug that you actually do need.
Prescription drugs lead to 50% of overdose deaths
For instance, taking too much of some powerful medications can lead to a fatal overdose. People often consider the ramifications of overdosing on illegal drugs, but prescription medications can have the same negative outcome if taken at the wrong levels. According to some reports, roughly half of all the overdose deaths in the United States every year come from prescription medications.
In a medical setting, this issue is compounded by the fact that the patients tend to trust the doctors. Most people have no idea how much of any specific medication they should be taking or even what it should look like. They may not notice that the doctor made a mistake until they start having serious symptoms.
What if this has happened to you?
If you’ve lost a loved one or suffered serious harm due to a prescription error, be sure you know what legal options you have for redress.