Most people who are prescribed a medication by a physician are prescribed a ready-made form of that medication, whether it be a pill, liquid, powder, or cream. However, sometimes a need arises for a physician to prescribe a very specific dose or form of a medication based on a patient’s individual needs. This is called a compounded medication.
Compounded medications require that a pharmacist mix together certain ingredients and essentially create the exact dose and form of a medication that is tailored to a patient’s needs. In many cases, compounded medications are required by the elderly or the very young. While compounded pharmaceuticals are necessary for some patients, there is a chance that the pharmacist creating the medication makes an error, resulting in the wrong medication or wrong dose being delivered to the patient.
Eight-Year-Old Boy Dies Due to Error in Compounded Medication
Earlier this year, a young Canadian boy died in his sleep after his mother provided him with a compounded medication created by a local pharmacist. According to a local news source reporting on the tragic error, the young boy suffered from an REM sleep disorder that required he take tryptophan. However, since the boy had difficulty taking the tryptophan pills, his mother had a special liquid medication compounded by the pharmacist. The compounded medication worked fine for 18 months.
After picking up what turned out to be the boy’s final prescription of the medication, the boy’s mother gave him a dose of the medication before bed. Sadly, her son never awoke. Initially, the boy’s family had no idea what had caused his death. It was later discovered through a chemical analysis of the medication that there was no tryptophan in the liquid medication, and it contained only baclofen, a powerful muscle relaxer usually prescribed to adults suffering from Multiple Sclerosis.
After learning about the cause of their son’s death, the boy’s family initiated a lawsuit against the pharmacy, seeking roughly $4 million in damages for the loss of their son. The outcome of this family’s case has yet to be determined by the Canadian court system.
Pharmacists Have a Legal Duty
All pharmacists have a legal duty to accurately fill a patient’s prescription. This is regardless of whether the prescription is in a ready-made form or is a compounded medication that requires special tailoring. When a pharmacist’s error results in an injury or death, an injured patient or their family may be able to pursue compensation from the pharmacist as well as the pharmacy that employed him.
Have You Been a Victim of a Pharmacy Error?
If you or a loved one has recently been a victim of a pharmacy error, you may be entitled to significant monetary compensation for all that you have been through. Due to the complexities that may arise during the course of a pharmacy error case, it is important that you consult with an attorney who is experienced in pharmacy error cases. The skilled Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. personal injury attorneys at the law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC have decades of experience handling pharmacy error cases and know what it takes to be successful on their clients’ behalf. Call 410-654-3600 today to set up a free consultation.
More Blog Posts:
Pharmacist’s Error Results in Seven-Year-Old Boy Receiving Medication Ten Times Stronger than Prescribed, Pharmacy Error Injury Lawyer Blog, October 3, 2016.
Name Mix-Ups Are One of the Most Common Types of Pharmacy Errors, Pharmacy Error Injury Lawyer Blog, September 19, 2016.