Coumadin, a blood thinner, can cause death if it is not properly administered and monitored. This drug must be carefully adjusted; if a patient is given too much, bleeding cannot be controlled. If enough is not given, clots can develop. According to government inspection reports from 2011 to 2014, more than 165 nursing home residents were hospitalized or died after dosing errors of Coumadin were made. A 2007 study in the American Journal of Medicine estimated that nursing home residents experience near 34,000 fatal, life-threatening, or serious events related to the blood thinner annually.
According to a study by Houston Methodist and Stanford University, certain acid reflux medications are being linked to an increased risk of heart attacks. Researchers scoured over 16 million records from nearly 3 million patients through data mining in search of a linkage between gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD, medication, and frequency of heart attacks. The study found that patients taking drugs known as proton pump inhibitors, such as Nexium, Prilosec, and Prevacid, had a 16 to 20 percent higher risk of heart attack than those who took H2 blockers, a drug class including Zantac and Tagamet. At this point these studies can only find associations so more conclusive studies are needed to prove if the drugs actually caused these illnesses.
In the United States, there are a significant amount of prescription drugs in the marketplace. As a result, it is critical to ensure that each drug is thoroughly tested for safety. Defective medication can produce severe side effects with some even being fatal. In June 2014, the Center for Disease Control estimated that more than 700,000 Americans a year are seen in hospital emergency rooms for adverse drug effects.
Litigation is being prepared against Xarelto, a drug intended to reduce the risk of stroke and blood clots in people with atrial fibrillation, due to its linkage with uncontrollable internal bleeding. Since 2011, the anticoagulant has not been approved to reduce blood clots in patients with coronary artery disease. The lawsuit focuses on the failure to warn patients of the side effects of Xarelto, including uncontrollable internal bleeding which might be able to be reversed as easily as with other anticoagulants.
A woman in Washington, D.C. has filed a lawsuit against Bayer as a result of a stroke that occurred from taking the birth control product called Yaz. In early 2008, Sharon Paez, the plaintiff, was prescribed Yaz by her health care provider which she took as a contraceptive but also as treatment for other menstrual complaints such as acne, cramps, and PMS.
GranuFlo a product used in dialysis causes a high risk for cardiac arrest when not prescribed properly. A judge in Colorado, dismissed some claims against DaVita Healthcare partners because the company did not manufacture the products, they simply added water to the products when used. The product liability and breach of warranty claims were also dropped against DaVita.
The prescription drug Paxil has been used by many doctors across Texas and the United States to treat depression, anxiety disorders, stress disorders, and other mental conditions.
Every year pharmaceutical companies bring to market a vast numbers of new drugs. With these new drugs the pharmaceutical industry is hoping to provide the next cure to a disease or health problem, but sometimes it is to just have the most marketable product to sell. Due to the ever competitive multibillion dollar pharmaceutical industry, these companies, at times, hastily place new drugs in the market. As a result, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has enacted standards and procedures to ensure the drug meets certain requirements. Typically, the drug that makes it into the hands of the end user is safe and does exactly what it was designed to do. Even with the FDA's involvement, sometimes the new drug can lead to a debilitating injury or the death of the user due to side effects. For example, recent advances in women's contraceptives, such as NuvaRing, have shown that with time the data shows a higher risk for blood clots and even death with its use.
According to the New York Times, Americans spend an estimated $5 billion a year on herbal supplements that promise everything from fighting off colds to curbing hot flashes. But now there is more reason for supplement buyers to beware. DNA tests show that many pills labeled as healing herbs are little more than powdered rice and weeds.