In years past, patients' medical records were stored in color-coded paper filing systems and charts. Prescriptions were handed out on a piece of paper, scrawled with the doctor's often-untidy signature, to be handed to the clerk at the pharmacy counter who would then dispense the drug. These days, however, doctors, hospitals and pharmacies in Pennsylvania have turned to electronic means to keep track of patient records. Everything, from a medical exam to the administration of medications is recorded electronically, and prescriptions are sent to the pharmacy straight from the physician's computer. While it may seem that upgrades in technology would lead to upgrades in patient care, this is not always the case.
Going to the doctor should be at least a yearly event for Pennsylvania residents. Whether it is for your yearly checkup, because you are feeling ill or for ongoing treatment, patients continually visit their medical professionals, whom they rely on and trust. While nurses and doctors are educated and trained to properly treat and care for patients, some mistakes can occur during their encounters with patients. And when it comes to medication errors occurring, nurses are frequently to blame.
Placing a loved one in a nursing home means trusting others to care for the health and well-being of your aging family member. Most nursing home residents in Pennsylvania and elsewhere have to take medications on a daily basis. Although the number of medications, or the dosage, might change, nursing home employees are trusted to administer these medications correctly and on time.
Preparing for a surgery is not always easy. Patients in Pennsylvania and elsewhere are likely concerned about the procedure, what complications a surgeon might encounter during the procedure and how well their recovery will be post operation. While surgeons are the medical professionals that control the procedure, other medical professionals play major roles. And any of these medical professionals could be the cause of a medical mistake occurring during the surgery.
When children fall ill, parents in Pennsylvania and elsewhere are not only concerned about what is ailing their child, but also whether the recommended course of treatment is right for their child. With regards to infants and toddlers, the concern heightens, fearing that a slight mistake with medication could prove fatal. Although medical professionals are trained and educated on how to properly treat and administer medication to children, medication mistakes unfortunately occur, causing young patients harm and pain.
A study by Danish researchers has found that hormonal contraceptives are linked with an increased risk of depression. The study viewed more than a million women between the ages of 15 and 34 from 2000 to 2013. Users of hormonal contraception had a 40 percent heightened risk of developing depression after six months of using the contraception. Certain pills, such as progestin-only pills or Levonorgestrel IUD posed an even greater risk of depression. Adolescent girls were found to have the greatest risk of developing depression, but this may be due to the fact that young girls are especially susceptible to depression. The researchers say that even though the risk of depression is significantly increased with the use of hormonal contraceptives, most women will not develop depression from using them. However, it is important that women are educated on the depressive risks of hormonal birth control methods and know that there are non-hormonal forms of birth control. To read a summary of the study by Nicholas Bakalar of the New York Times, click here.
When residents in Pennsylvania become ill, they rely on medical professionals to diagnose and treat them. In most cases, this often requires prescribing the patient medication. And, while these medications can be effective when used properly, patients could be harmed due to negligence and errors occurring in the prescribing, distribution and administering medications.
When we are ill, we cannot always rely on over-the-counter medications to heal our ailments. Some injuries or illnesses require the aid of prescription medication to thwart infections, reduce pain or initiate the treatment process. However, in order for these medications to work appropriately for patients in Pennsylvania or elsewhere, a patient must receive the correct medication at the proper time and at the right dose. If a doctor or a nurse fails in this respect, it could lead to serious consequences for the patient.
Whether it is temporary due to an illness or an infection or long-term due to a serious disease or long-term condition, most residents in Pennsylvania have been prescribed a medication at one time or another. And while prescription medication can be very resourceful to treat and heal patients, if patients are not properly prescribed or informed of the medication they are prescribed, this could cause serious and even fatal adverse drug events.
A recent FDA report warns consumers of the dangers associated with Aripiprazole, a drug used to treat depression, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder. The drug, which goes by the trade names Abilify, Abilify Maintena, and Aristada, can in some cases lead to irresistible urges to gamble, eat, shop, and have sex. Aripiprazole has been prescribed to more than 1.6 million patients over the last 13 years. As of May of 2016, 184 cases of Aripiprazole induced impulse problems had been reported to the FDA, but the agency believes a high number of cases go unreported. Of these 184 reported cases, 164 of them complained of impulsive gambling after consuming the drug. When these patients lowered their dosage or stopped taking Aripiprazole altogether, their impulse problems stopped. Unfortunately, many doctors initially believed that the increase in gambling was a valid reason to increase their patient's dosage of Aripiprazole, making the behavior worse. Read more about the problems associate with Aripiprazole.