The family of a young girl recently filed a $750,000 federal lawsuit against her local pharmacy, alleging that the business wrote the incorrect directions on her prescription for a seizure medication, causing the girl to take five times the proper dosage of the drug.
According to the lawsuit, the little girl was given a prescription when she was four years old for two milliliters of an anti-seizure medication, to be taken twice a day. However, when the prescription was filled, the instructions stated that the girl should be given two teaspoonfuls twice a day. One teaspoon is the equivalent of almost five milliliters. The pharmacist in the case stated that she repeated the dosage back to the doctor at the time it was filled, and it was confirmed as written.
The young girl’s mother stated that immediately after giving her daughter the incorrect dosage, the girl suffered a serious seizure requiring immediate hospitalization and treatment at a local hospital. According to the lawsuit, the girl became catatonic, and the girl was later transferred to a Children’s Hospital where she remained unconscious for some time. Once she regained consciousness, the girl was unable to walk, and had to be fed baby food, resulting in a 17-18 pound weight loss. She reportedly still suffers side effects from the incorrect drug dosage, and is afraid of taking medicine.
This story is incredibly disheartening. The little girl in this lawsuit, now nine, took five times the proper dosage of an anti-seizure medication. Common overdose symptoms of this particular drug include extreme drowsiness, agitation, aggression, shallow breathing, weakness, or fainting. Additionally, it seems probable that such a large dosage of the medication could easily have been fatal for the girl, as in other similar cases.
Although the pharmacist in the case claims that she confirmed the dosage for the drug, it is unclear whether the person who repeated back the dosage said two milliliters or two teaspoons. Additionally, pharmacists are also required to attend medical school prior to licensing, and thus should be aware of proper dosages of various medications.
When a pharmacist or other healthcare professional makes an error that results in injury or death of a loved one, you may be able to sue them under a negligence cause of action. A claim of negligence means that the pharmacist failed to act in accordance with a how another similarly qualified pharmacist would have done. Typically failure to observe a mandatory procedure, such as requiring a second reading of the prescription or double checking of a dosage with recommendations, could potentially satisfy this requirement. If successful, your negligence lawsuit could result in a financial award to compensate for all of the medical expenses you have incurred so far and for those reasonably anticipated to occur in the future, an amount for pain and suffering, and in some cases potentially punitive damages.
If you or a loved one has been injured or died as a result of a medication or pharmacy dispensing error, contact the experienced Maryland prescription error attorneys at Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC. Our lawyers have extensive experience in advocating to the full extent of the law on behalf of individuals who have been harmed by medication errors, whether they were improperly prescribed, dispensed, or administered. Contact us today by calling us at (800) 654-1949 or through our website, in order to schedule your complimentary initial consultation.
More Blog Posts:
Common Abbreviation of Acetaminophen Causes Potentially Deadly Consequences, Pharmacy Error Injury Lawyer Blog, published October 9, 2013
Intentional Pharmacy Error Causes Woman to Unknowingly Take Abortion Medication, Pharmacy Error Injury Lawyer Blog, published October 2, 2013