As Ohio residents may know, medication errors may cause adverse effects and sometimes occur in hospital settings. A recent investigation that lasted more than seven months at Massachusetts General Hospital reported that medication errors occurred before, during and after surgeries.
Out of 277 surgeries, 124 were found to have had medication errors. Of the 3,675 drugs administered during the surgeries, 193 adverse drug events and other errors were noted. Researchers at Harvard said that up to 80 percent of the adverse effects and medication errors were avoidable. The types of medication errors included giving a patient the incorrect dose, problems with drug labeling and improperly treating changes in vital signs during the surgery.
The study reported that procedures normally in place in hospitals are sometimes not strictly followed. This is due to the need to make fast decisions, a quick pace and because circumstances may change quickly. The period of time studied included the pre- and post-operative phases. Medication errors were either documented in medical charts or otherwise recorded. It was found during the study that 5 percent of the cases involved medication error or a poor reaction to the medication. The study concluded with the view that these types of errors should be the focus of further review and action to work at eliminating medication errors during surgery.
Medication errors may result in serious consequences and contribute to longer recuperative periods and extended hospital stays. A patient who has suffered adverse results due to such a mistake may want to speak with a medical malpractice attorney to determine the most advisable way of seeking compensation for the damages that have been incurred.