Compassionate Austin Pharmaceutical Negligence Attorneys, Texas
Help for victims of medication mistakes and prescription drug injury in Texas
Medical malpractice comes in many forms – it can happen during surgery, childbirth, dental procedures, and when prescribing or dispensing medication. Medication errors injure hundreds of thousands of Americans each year; a sad statistic when these drugs are meant to help people. Whether a medication comes as a pill, liquid, injection, or intravenously, health care providers and pharmacists are required to provide safe and competent care to their patients.
When they fail to provide this care and a patient suffers harm, the injured party may have a claim for pharmaceutical negligence. The Austin medical malpractice attorneys at Slack Davis Sanger can help. We have over five decades of experience representing the people of Texas when the negligence of medical professionals cause them injury. We work to secure financial compensation for your injuries and losses, holding the responsible parties accountable for their actions.
What is a medication error?
The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) defines medication errors as “any preventable event that may cause or lead to inappropriate medication use or patient harm while the medication is in the control of the healthcare professional, patient, or consumer.” In other words, medication errors are when medical professionals make mistakes with drugs that cause patient injuries. These injuries can include prolonged hospitalization, birth defects, allergic reactions, and, in the worst cases, death.
Negative outcomes from medication errors are called “adverse drug events,” or ADEs. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports ADEs cause over one million emergency room visits each year, and 350,000 hospitalizations. They note that over 40 percent of patients hospitalized due to ADEs are harmed by medicines requiring careful patient monitoring. These types of drugs include blood thinners, diabetes medications, seizure medicines, and heart medication.
The CDC also reports approximately 150,000 adults need emergency room treatment annually for ADEs related to antibiotic use. They warn patients not to ask for antibiotics when a doctor says they are not needed.
The majority of medication and drug errors are preventable. If you or a loved one were harmed by an adverse drug effect, the Austin pharmaceutical negligence attorneys at Slack Davis Sanger will determine what happened – and then work to make things right.
What are examples of pharmaceutical negligence?
All product manufacturers have a duty to consumers to bring a safe product to market. This is even more important in the medical industry. Not only do pharmaceutical companies have a duty to develop, manufacture, and deliver safe products, physicians, other prescribers and pharmacists also have a duty to prescribe and dispense those medications properly. Even the smallest failure anywhere in this chain of supply can lead to patient injury. Examples of pharmaceutical negligence and malpractice include:
- Defective drugs, which can happen when manufacturers fail to follow safety protocols, allow drugs to become contaminated, or rush products to market without proper testing. Pharmaceutical companies that allow dangerous and defective drugs on the market can be held liable for injuries they cause to patients and consumers.
- Errors in prescribing, which can cause a patient extreme harm. These can include prescribing the wrong medication, the wrong dosage, or failing to check a patient’s medical history for drug allergies or interactions. For example, we represented a family whose loved one was prescribed Bactrim while she was on blood thinners, which has a risk of causing internal bleeding. She died as a result of this dangerous drug combination.
- Fulfillment errors, meaning a pharmacist makes errors in dispensing medication to patients. These errors can include dispensing the right drug in the wrong dose, giving a prescription to the wrong person, mixing up similar medications, or failing to provide proper warnings and instructions. We successfully represented a client who developed Stevens-Johnson Syndrome after being prescribed Lamictal – a dangerous drug that was not indicated for his medical condition.
- Failure to disclose side effects, which is part of a pharmacist’s and doctor’s duty to their patients. Patients have the right to know the side effects of their medications, as well as whether they should refrain from certain activities, food, or alcohol while taking them.
The Austin pharmaceutical negligence attorneys at Slack Davis Sanger can help if you or a loved one suffer injury from medication mistakes.
What are the consequences of medication errors?
When prescribed and dispensed properly, prescription medication can be remarkably effective at treating a variety of conditions. However, when doctors and pharmacists act negligently, patients can experience serious adverse side effects.
These can include allergic reactions, causing seizures, shock, airway swelling, or cardiac arrest. Patients could also overdose, putting life-threatening stress on vital organs. A patient’s condition could also worsen if they take the wrong medication or wrong dosage, or suffer other adverse effects from medication interactions. One of our clients suffered a ruptured Achilles tendon after being prescribed Levaquin when she did not really need it. We successfully sued the physician and pharmacy on her behalf.
What causes pharmaceutical negligence and errors?
According to the Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy (AMCP), medication errors are one of the most common forms of medical malpractice and cost the country over $177 billion each year. The most frequently-cited reasons for prescription drug errors include:
- Illegible handwritten prescriptions
- Insufficient or missing information
- Incorrect selection of drug or dosage
- Overly complex drug regimens
- Medications with similar-sounding or looking names
- Failure to send a prescription to a pharmacy
- Lack of adequate documentation or review
In some cases, a medication mistakes results in no harm to a patient. However, when it does, our medication error attorneys advocate for injured patients and their families. Our legal team has a deep understanding of medical malpractice law and puts that knowledge to work for you.
Am I entitled to compensation if I’m injured by a medication error?
When you or a loved one suffer injury from the negligent actions of another, you’re eligible to bring a personal injury claim against the at-fault party. Our Austin pharmaceutical negligence attorneys work with you, your medical specialists, and other experts to show that a preventable medication error caused your injuries and losses. We work to secure financial compensation and damages, including:
Medical expenses, both now and in the future. These can include hospitalizations and medical visits for your injuries and any treatments necessary to keep you healthy and pain-free.
Lost wages from time off work spent healing from your injuries. This can also include any potential lost earning potential if you cannot return to your current job.
Pain and suffering, meant to compensate you for the daily physical and emotional pain from your injuries.
If a medication error caused the tragic death of your loved one, the lawyers at Slack Davis Sanger will bring a wrongful death claim on your behalf.
Dedicated Austin pharmaceutical negligence attorneys
The team at Slack Davis Sanger have decades of experience fighting for the rights of patients injured by medical negligence. When doctors, other prescribers or pharmacists make a mistake with prescription drugs, patients can suffer devastating consequences. Our attorneys will stand up for you. For more information or to schedule a free consultation at one of our offices in Austin, Dallas, or Fort Worth, please call 800-455-8686 or fill out our contact form.
6001 Bold Ruler Way
Austin, TX 78746
Main Austin Practice Areas