Loren Peters, an 85-year-old man, made headlines after he was admitted to the emergency room in 2013. His gums bled and his body was black and blue with bruising. The cause? An overdose of the widely-used blood thinner, Coumadin.
Loren had been prescribed Coumadin in his nursing home due to his abnormal heart rhythm. Abnormal heart rhythms can lead to strokes, which can be prevented by taking Coumadin. To the horror of Loren’s family, he landed in the emergency room in bad shape. All because his Coumadin prescription was not properly managed.
Loren’s case is one of many that we’ll discuss in this article. If you think you have grounds for filing a coumadin lawsuit, keep reading to learn more.
Coumadin: What Is It For?
Coumadin, whose generic form is Warfarin Sodium, is a blood-thinning drug. It can be effective in preventing heart attacks, pulmonary embolisms, strokes, and other blood clotting issues. It is widely prescribed, especially among elderly populations, such as nursing home residents.
Although an incredibly helpful drug, Coumadin can be dangerous if not managed with care. If incorrectly prescribed it can lead to internal bleeding, injury, or death. Those taking Coumadin need careful prescription monitoring to avoid dangerous side effects.
Mismanagement of this drug can lead to disastrous outcomes, including death. Despite its risks, prescription mismanagement for Coumadin occurs at a staggering rate.
Many individuals taking Coumadin live in nursing homes. These populations are already vulnerable to a host of health issues. Effective corrective solutions rarely follow when medical mismanagement occurs in these settings. What is the usual slap on the wrist? Nursing homes are often asked to make simple corrections. They might also be asked to put new policies in place to track their residents with greater care. Hardly a fail-proof plan to ensure the safety of patients taking a drug with such heavy risks.
It’s clear that, often, a greater action needs to occur to promote real change. Too many victims, and their families, suffer unthinkable pain due to such errors. Coumadin, although powerful and often necessary, requires careful maintenance. When a trusted healthcare provider fails in that duty, real consequences occur.
Have you or a loved one have suffered harm due to issues involving Coumadin? If so, you may be wondering whether you can file a coumadin lawsuit because of medical malpractice.
How Do You Know If It’s Medical Malpractice?
Medical malpractice is a serious issue. We trust healthcare professionals to act in our best interest. Although humans are susceptible to making honest mistakes, it still doesn’t excuse malpractice. Healthcare professionals have a sacred duty to provide the highest levels of care.
Medical malpractice occurs when a healthcare professional, through negligence or an act of omission, causes injury to a patient. To classify a case as malpractice, the following characteristics need to occur:
- A relationship exists between the patient and healthcare provider.
- The healthcare professional has a duty to provide their patient with appropriate care.
- There must be proof that the healthcare provider breached their duty of care.
A few examples include: negligence, misdiagnosis, lack of informed consent, and more. And there must be proof that the breach of duty caused an injury to the patient, as well as the injury resulted in damages. In addition, patients can sometimes sue for pain and suffering.
If you’ve experienced harm due to malpractice, you may be feeling lost right about now. The burden to prove that a patient has experienced harm can seem like a huge obstacle. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, don’t lose hope yet. Read on to see how you can tackle a coumadin lawsuit.
Other Stories Of Neglect
Loren Peters hasn’t been the only victim of the popular drug, which has been prescribed for decades. Not by a long shot.
Other victims, such as 89-year-old Dolores Huss, have paid the ultimate price. Dolores was given an antibiotic that amplified the Coumadin she was already taking. The prescriber failed to alert her physician that Dolores needed additional blood tests. The tragic result of this error? Internal bleeding and Dolores’s eventual death.
Shirley Reim, a nursing home resident in Minnesota, suffered permanently due to Coumadin. Shirley’s nursing home didn’t administer her Coumadin prescription 50 days in a row. Not a couple days, or even a week. No, a whopping 50 days of missed medication. Not only that, the nursing home failed to perform blood tests ordered by her doctor. Shirley ended up in the hospital with blood clots in her legs due to their negligence.
There have to be checks and balances. Patients deserve better care, including better management of coumadin.
Filing A Coumadin Lawsuit – What Steps To Take
Choosing to file a coumadin lawsuit is a serious decision, and it can seem overwhelming. The good news is that you are not in this fight alone. Our team at Hampton & King has the expertise you need to figure out your next steps. Although you or a loved one has been harmed, we’re here to help you seek justice and compensation.
If you or a loved one have experienced harm due to issues with Coumadin, you don’t have to suffer in silence. Reach out to Hampton & King today for a free consultation to discuss filing a possible coumadin lawsuit.