Hoffer v. Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania Verdict: On November 2, 2012, after a two week trial, a Philadelphia jury awarded 12.6 million dollars to a child who suffered severe brain injury due to the neglect of his health care providers. When his mother was 38 weeks pregnant, the baby had flipped around inside her, for the first time in a “breech” position rather than head down. The midwife diagnosed this during a routine visit, but failed to call a physician to attempt to externally turn the baby. Instead, she was discharged without care, and scheduled for a cesarean section.
Blood thinners and thrombolytic medications are known for being extremely dangerous if improperly used, not properly monitored, or not given in the appropriate time period if one suspects a stroke is developing. Also, people can be seriously injured if blood thinners are not used when they should be. Many people suffer serious injuries when physicians don't correctly inform them of the risks of the medication, medical professionals administer improper dosage, or anticoagulants or thrombolytics are not used when needed.
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Blood thinner medicines are prescribed to prevent blood clots that can cause heart attacks, strokes, blood clots in the legs, pulmonary emboli (blood clots in the lungs) or other areas of the body. Blood thinners such as Coumadin, Warfarin, and Heparin can work very well, as long as they are properly monitored, ordered, packaged, labeled, and administered correctly. If they are not, it can lead to bleeding into the brain, hemorrhage, or even death.
When used incorrectly, blood thinners can result in the following:
Similarly, drugs known as thrombolytics (streptokinase, urokinase, tPA, and drugs like that) have remarkable benefits when timely and properly used to avoid the development of permanent brain damage. We have handled many cases in which a patient comes to the emergency room with signs and symptoms of a stroke, and the doctors fail to recognize that and use these “clot busting” drugs to restore blood flow to the patient’s brain. The failure to timely administer these life saving medications can and will cause devastating neurologic injuries.
A patient can also receive a highly toxic dose of a blood thinner if they are not warned about foods to avoid while on blood-thinning medication. Many physicians fail to inform their patients that they should avoid certain foods, homeopathic treatments, herbs, vitamins, or supplements that will make their blood even thinner. Take a look at some foods to avoid while on blood thinners:
Similarly, there can be a multitude of medication interactions, such as antibiotics, that can increase your risk of bleeding while on blood thinners. Your doctor must be mindful of the various medication interactions that can occur and adjust your therapy accordingly.
Your doctor has an obligation to not only inform you that certain foods and herbs can thin your blood but also needs to monitor your bleeding times even more closely, especially if you are a vegetarian.
Doctors have an obligation to inform you that food, supplements, or vitamins you are taking may thin your blood even more. They also have an obligation to properly monitor your lab values, which are PT, PTT, bleeding time, or clotting time. Pharmacists need to make sure they are filling and labeling your prescription correctly. Any mistake on the part of the health care provider that has caused a catastrophic injury ought to be confronted. With people's lives on the line, blood thinner malpractice must be quickly and decisively addressed.
Since 1958, The Beasley Firm has been successfully litigating claims such as these with documented results. The Beasley Firm is nationally recognized for awarding over $2 billion for its clients. Our collective knowledge has consistently resulted in record-setting verdicts and settlements, including some of the largest medical negligence verdicts in Pennsylvania history, $100 million and $55 million, as well as countless other multimillion-dollar judgments and settlements.
If you or a loved one has been harmed by anticoagulant mismanagement, please contact one of our experienced lawyers at (215) 866-2424.
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