Pharmaceutical Errors: When Drugs Cause Dangerous Effects

Advancements in science and technology have helped the pharmaceutical industry to create better solutions to the most pressing medical issues. However, there are times when these solutions lead to unforeseen effects. Defective pharmaceutical products make up a large number of all product liability lawsuits filed in America. It’s an unfortunate fact that there are some drugs and medications which lead to effects opposite to what they were originally intended for.

The website of the National Injury Law Center found that pharmaceutical errors and other similar issues are usually caused by several factors. One of these involves the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which is the agency tasked to examine new medical products before approving them for public use. Sometimes, the most scrupulous testing process can miss certain problems and side effects. This is especially true for cases when physical manifestation of certain side effects take time.

However, pharmaceutical companies are typically the ones most accountable for controversies involving new medical products. Plenty of companies market their products for uses that aren’t approved by the FDA. Among such controversial cases involve AlloDerm, which is a skin grafting tissue manufactured by LifeCell Corporation.

Medical issues involving damage to skin cells are typically addressed through a surgical procedure called skin grafting. In order to repair this damage, surgeons make use of skin from another part of the patient’s body. LifeCell was able to introduce an alternative around the year 1992. Instead of harvesting skin tissue from the patient’s body, doctors can make use of a biologic tissue processed from donated human tissue. This alternative was primarily intended for skin grafting procedures done on burn victims. However, LifeCell has been marketing the use of AlloDerm for breast reconstruction and hernia repair.

Unfortunately, AlloDerm has reportedly caused several issues for patients who have undergone such procedures. A 2010 study in the Journal of Plastic Surgery, which was conducted by doctors from the University of Cincinnati and Harvard Medical School, looked into the infectious complications caused by the product during breast reconstruction surgeries. Another research published in the medical journal Springer Link, found that hernia repairs using AlloDerm led to a complication rate of 24 percent. . Patients typically complain of complications involving infections, perforations, and abscesses. Considering these grave consequences, it’s no wonder that filing an AlloDerm lawsuit is the common route that patients take to find just compensation. People considering this sort of action often contact defective pharmaceutical lawyers for guidance.

When Cerebral Palsy is caused by Medical Negligence

Cerebral palsy is a serious medical condition that has profound effects on a person’s mobility. Patients suffering from cerebral palsy, also called ‘CP’ for short, have difficulty with maintaining their balance and posture. Depending on the type of CP they have, they might also suffer from stiff muscles and uncontrollable spasms and movements. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), cerebral palsy is the most common motor disability in American children.

Cerebral palsy results from abnormal brain development caused by damage or injury. In most cases, this abnormality is caused by the lack of oxygen in an infant’s brain or body. It is usually classified as either acquired or congenital. Acquired CP is caused by brain damage that occurs after an infant is born, typically resulting from infections or head injuries. Meanwhile, congenital CP refers to brain damage that is caused by complications before or during child birth. These complications include infections during the mother’s pregnancy, premature births, and low birth weight. Infants can be susceptible to both types without much warning. As such, medical professionals are responsible for making sure risk factors and complications are addressed immediately. Unfortunately, this isn’t always true. Tragically, as it says on the website of the Driscoll Firm, some medical professionals make crucial mistakes that lead to this grave diagnosis.

When cerebral palsy is caused by medical malpractice, it is usually due to the following scenarios:

  • Failure to monitor fetal stats and heart rate during labor and delivery
  • Failure to perform a C-section procedure on time when conditions of the pregnancy makes it necessary
  • Failure to properly diagnose and promptly treat infections in infants, or during a mother’s pregnancy
  • Failure to address a prolapsed umbilical cord and other similar complications during childbirth
  • Failure to properly handle delivery room instruments like forceps and a vacuum

As eloquently described on the website of the Chris Mayo Law Firm, the birth of a child is a significant milestone for parents and families. It’s unfortunate that such an important event can be eclipsed by the tragic reality of medical malpractice and birth injuries. It’s crucial that parents-to-be are aware of risk factors that could lead to a serious diagnosis and its many difficult consequences.