PATIENT INJECTED WITH WRONG MEDICATION AT CLINIC OR HOSPITAL – MN ATTORNEYS
Our lawyers have had several cases where our client was given the wrong injection of medication at a medical hospital or clinic. Typically in those cases, the doctor prescribes the correct medication but the order is not filled correctly, or the doctor transposes a medication entry in the computer.
Here is an example of one case a medical malpractice lawyer at our office handled where the doctor actually proscribed the wrong medication by confusing two very similar sounding injections.
Our client was seen at the clinic, requesting a Depo-Provera shot for birth control. She told the medical clinic that she had started a new relationship and had difficulties remembering to take birth control pills at the same time every day, so she wanted to be sure that she was protected when she started a sexual relationship with her new boyfriend. Instead of ordering a Depo-Provera shot, however, the doctor mistakenly placed an order in the system for a Depo-Medrol injection. Depo-Medrol is an anti-inflammatory glucocorticoid that is typically used to treat pain and swelling associated with arthritis or other joint disorders. This error was not caught by clinic staff, who came in to administer our client with what was believed to be the Depo-Provera shot, but was instead a Depo-Medrol shot. The nurse that administered the shot did not double check to see what she was injecting prior to administering the shot.
Our client was told to return in three months for a second Depo-Provera shot. Because she wanted to make sure that she continued to be protected, she made a point of making an appointment a little sooner than the three months, just to be safe, as she had just resumed her relationship with her long-term boyfriend. She returned to the clinic, scheduling the appointment with a different doctor because her regular doctor was booked for another few weeks, and she didn’t want to go over the 3 months’ time-line.
As is protocol, the nurse asked our client for a urine sample, and a pregnancy test was apparently performed before giving her the next shot. Unfortunately, the pregnancy test was positive for pregnancy. Our client was stunned and initially could not wrap her head around it. As it sunk in, she started hyperventilating and crying hysterically, asking how this could possibly have happened. She explained to the nurse practitioner that she had been told to wait two weeks before sexual intercourse and that she had waited over a month just to be safe and she couldn’t understand how she could be pregnant when she had done everything right.
The nurse Practitioner then explained that the doctor had mistakenly clicked on the Depo-Medrol injection on the computer instead of the Depo-Provera shot, so they gave her the wrong medication. Both the doctor and the nurse were in the room and tried to provide comfort to our client, who was crying and telling them how much she had wanted to avoid another pregnancy. The doctor informed our client that it was a “new” nurse who had administered the shot, and that her “normal nurse” would have caught the prescription mistake right away.
It was very difficult for our client to talk to her parents about this because she had been feeling so proud about how she had been taking care of herself, getting a full time job and taking care of her daughter, and had plans for further schooling. Now she was in the very difficult position of having to tell her parents that she was pregnant again, even if it was no fault of her own. To make things more difficult, our client hated the thought of being 19 years old with two children from two different fathers. Not only did the idea of being the mother of and caring for two children at such a young age scare her, but the stigma of being a young single mom with children from two different dads was humiliating. It was no consolation that the clinic and doctor made the mistake of giving her the wrong medication. When she came to us, attorney Pam Rochlin was understanding of the situation and determined to get this young woman compensation to help with the situation.
For the next month and a half or so our continued to struggle with the reality of her pregnancy, caused by receiving the wrong medication from the doctor at the clinic, as well as the worries about trying to raise another child at age 19. Every time she felt that she had made up her mind as to how she wanted to proceed, she would then begin to question it, and would make a different decision about what to do. Before this all happened, our client felt like she had so much going for her, planning to start college in the summer and working towards a degree. However, she knew that she was going to have set back those goals/plans if she had another baby. She also worried about parenting and raising a child with a man she barely knew. The prospect of raising a child together (but living separately – ie. not in a relationship) caused both of them significant concern.
Just before her 20-week prenatal appointment and ultrasound, our client finally decided that she just couldn’t keep the baby. She had made plans for her life, including going back to school and working towards a career where she would be more financially stable. She knew that a baby would be a huge obstacle for her to get where she wanted to be, and felt like waiting another few years to start college was not fair to the daughter that she already had. At that point she decided to call a lawyer to sue the doctor and clinic or giving her the wrong shot and resulting in the unwanted pregnancy.
This is a case that required compensation for our client because of this medical mistake. She was given the wrong prescription and became pregnant as a result of the clinic giving her the wrong medication. Fortunately, we were successful in getting her a fair settlement. Our lawyers have 25 years’ experience representing people injured because of a medical mistake, medical malpractice, accident injury at the hospital or clinic, death, and other accidents. Pam Rochlin is a former partner at Meshbesher. She is tough, gets results, and provides personal attention to her clients. Call us for a free consultation.