What happens if you or your baby are prescribed the wrong dosage of a medication depends greatly on the specific medication, the condition being treated, and the dosage prescribed. The ill-effects of being prescribed the wrong dosage or another medication error could include:
- Birth injuries and lifelong impairments
- Preterm labor, loss of pregnancy, or stillbirth
- Temporary or permanent disabilities
- Untreated medical conditions
- Another life-threatening condition
A dosage error could put too much medication or too little medication into you or your baby’s body. Too much could cause serious side effects, depressed breathing, and other serious medical concerns. Too little would mean not receiving treatment for the initial condition. If that condition is life-threatening, this could be extremely dangerous.
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Wrong Dosage and Other Medication Errors Can Occur Despite Safeguards
According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), they receive more than 1000,000 reports of possible medication errors each year. Dosage errors are among the most common. This type of error can occur at any point in the cycle of prescribing, filling, or taking the medication. This includes:
- When the doctor prescribes the medication
- When it is typed into the computer system
- When the prescription is filled
- When the drug is given to the patient in a clinic or hospital setting
- When the patient self-dispenses a dose
Because of the prevalence of medication errors, there are systems in place to safeguard against them. This may include checking and rechecking, barcode scans, and automated dispensing. However, it is not uncommon for medical professionals to work around the safeguards because of factors that include understaffing, issues with the equipment, facility culture, or complex processes making their job more difficult.
Other ways medication errors occur include giving the prescription to the wrong patient, prescribing the wrong medication, listing the wrong time for the dose, and recommending the wrong administration route.
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Babies and Children May Suffer More Wrong Dosage Incidents
If you or your baby are prescribed the wrong dosage of a medication, you are not alone. According to a research review conducted for Patient Safety Network (PSNet), median error rates for medication errors is between 8 and 25 percent. When it comes to intravenous medications administered in hospitals, that number increases dramatically to between 48 and 53 percent.
Unfortunately, because of factors related to their small size and complex dosing requirements, many of those who endure side effects related to medication dosing errors are children or infants who are in the hospital. To calculate the dosing for some medications, doctors may need to use formulas based on the child’s weight or body surface.
Prescribing too high of a dose may also affect children and babies much faster than it would adults because they often receive very small doses anyway. This could mean they suffer additional complications because of these medication errors.
Being Prescribed the Wrong Dosage May Support a Medical Malpractice Case
If you or your baby were prescribed the wrong dosage of a medication and suffered negative effects, you may be able to build a case against the doctor, pharmacist, hospital, or another liable party. At the Birth Injury Lawyers Group, we can help you understand your case.
You can discuss what happened and the effects of the error with someone who is familiar with the medical malpractice and birth injury laws in your state. This will allow you to ask questions, learn more about your options, and consider if you want to take action.
If you qualify, your attorney may be able to assign liability, obtain relevant medical records, work with a medical expert witness to confirm malpractice, and navigate the legal system on your behalf. You may be able to recover damages that include:
- Related medical treatment costs
- Ongoing care costs
- Lost wages and reduced earning capacity
- Out-of-pocket expenses
- Pain and suffering and other intangible damages
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Get Help with a Free Case Review Today
Call the Birth Injury Lawyers Group to get help today. You can learn more about your options based on the specific details of your case for free. If you decide to hold the doctor or hospital accountable, in most cases, you will not need to pay anything upfront for your lawyer’s representation. They will receive their fees from the financial recovery they secure on your behalf.
Call (800) 222-9529 today to get started. Each state has its own deadlines for filing medical malpractice and birth injury claims, and other rules may apply as well. It is best to act as soon as possible so that you do not lose the right to do so under your state’s statute of limitations.