Prescription Errors, Dangerous Drugs, Medical Malpractice and Harmful Medical Devices
Most people don’t think twice about taking prescription drugs because they trust their doctors and pharmacists to give them the right medication. But, unfortunately, medication errors happen every day. Prescriptions get misinterpreted or are written incorrectly. The wrong drug is mistakenly dispensed at the pharmacy. The patient is told to take, or is administered, a dangerous dose of the drug. Any number of mistakes along the way can result in a tragedy. According to the FDA, medication errors cause at least one death every day and injure 1.3 million people in the United States every year.
When healthcare providers prescribe medications, patients assume they must be safe if they were approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). But sometimes, even when an FDA-approved prescription is filled properly and the patient takes the recommended dose, the patient still suffers serious injuries or dies as a result of taking the prescription drug. This can happen because of mistakes in clinical testing or manufacturing, improper labeling or incomplete information about the risks of taking the drug. Recent examples include Topamax, Pradaxa and some Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs), better known as “antidepressants.”
Some drugs are just too dangerous and should never have been sold in the first place. The FDA tries to prevent serious health risks by recalling dangerous drugs, but a recall usually comes only after the dangerous drugs have already hurt or killed people. Slack & Davis’ legal strategy and timing have been pivotal in helping families obtain financial compensation in pharmaceutical cases involving serious injury or death due to dangerous drugs such as Baycol, Vioxx, Fen Phen and others.
Medical Malpractice, Military Medical Malpractice, Hospital Negligence
Medical Malpractice is one of the most challenging areas of the law. It encompasses precise legal details and requires an up-to-the-minute understanding of statutory and case changes in the law.
Slack & Davis attorneys have obtained record-setting malpractice verdicts and spurred the reform of unfair laws by the Texas Supreme Court and Courts of Appeal. We believe that by encouraging the medical profession to examine itself, we help ensure a higher level of medical care for everyone.
We routinely handle medical malpractice cases involving failure to diagnose, improper diagnosis, negligent treatment and unnecessary surgery/treatment. We also handle claims under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) for people who have suffered serious injuries or the loss of a loved one due to the negligence of a military or government medical provider.
Harmful Medical Devices
Sadly, prescription drugs aren’t the only threat to patients. Medical devices, including artificial heart valves, pacemakers, hip and knee joints, dental implants, stents, orthopedic plates and screws or breast implants also have posed serious health concerns. A recent example includes the ASR, a metal-on-metal (MoM) hip implant, one of several models sold by DePuy Orthopaedics (a unit of Johnson & Johnson). After two years of reports that its ASR hip implant systems were failing in patients, in August 2010 DePuy Orthopaedics recalled its ASRTM XL Acetabular Hip System (approved for use in the U.S. and around the world) and DePuy ASRTM Hip Resurfacing System (only approved for use outside the U.S.). These systems, which first became available in July 2003, were failing in patients only a few years after implant. Sadly, the recall of DePuy’s hip products came after seven years on the market and more than 93,000 patients were potentially affected.
Stryker’s recall of its Rejuvenate and ABG II modular-neck stems. Hip stems are attachments to artificial hips that allow the device to fit a patient’s anatomy. Stryker’s decision to remove these devices from the market and end global distribution comes after continued post-market surveillance data that “may be predictive of a trend,” according to the FDA.
DePuy Orthopaedics’ “Field Safety Notice” for its LUSTER Cemented Polished Femoral Hip Stems and ULTIMA LX Cemented Polished Femoral Hip Stems implanted with any metal-on-metal (MoM) devices, indicates that they could potentially exhibit corrosion of the polished surfaces. This corrosion may in turn lead to an increased incidence of peri-prosthetic soft-tissue necrosis.
Transvaginal Mesh. Doctors often implant transvaginal mesh in female patients to repair the effects of Stress Urinary Incontinence (SUI) and Pelvic Organ Prolapse (POP). Many serious conditions have occurred as a result of transvaginal mesh implantation, including migration of the mesh into the vagina and uterus, organ prolapse into the vagina and scarring.
Morcellaton is used to remove the uterus (hysterectomy) and uterine fibroids (myomectomy) by dividing the uterine tissue into smaller pieces so it can be removed through a small incision in the abdomen. Recent analysis of available data illustrates a significant risk of spreading unsuspected cancerous tissue beyond the uterus as a result of the procedure.
How We Can Help
At Slack & Davis, our in-house ability to screen and investigate complex cases involving dangerous drugs, prescription errors, medical malpractice and defective medical devices sets us apart from other personal injury firms and gives our clients tremendous leverage against tough corporate adversaries. Our full-time legal nurse consultant provides patient-care expertise, allowing our medical and pharmaceutical attorneys to view the case from many different perspectives. If you have questions about prescription errors, dangerous drugs, medical malpractice and/or medical devices that may have caused serious injuries, please visit the resources listed below – and contact the attorneys at Slack & Davis to learn more.
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