Many patient deaths are caused by the negligent prescription of narcotic pain medications—especially fentanyl and methadone. Despite the risk of fatal respiratory depression posed by fentanyl and methadone, some doctors and other medical professional prescribe these medications inappropriately for their patients.
Fentanyl and methadone can and do cause patient deaths when prescribed inappropriately,. Common prescribing errors include:
Patients who are prescribed powerful opioid medications such as fentanyl or methadone in combination with other medications that suppress the central nervous system may face an increased risk of a combined or mixed drug overdose.
In 2016, the FDA warned about the risk of prescribing opioids in combination with benzodiazepines, a class of tranquilizer drugs that can decrease activity in the central nervous system. The FDA’s warning included benzodiazepine medications such as:
Other CNS-suppressant drugs that can increase the risk of a mixed drug overdose involving fentanyl or methadone include:
A mixed drug overdose can also occur when patients are prescribed fentanyl or methadone together with other medications that inhibit the metabolism of these powerful opioids. Medications that can inhibit the metabolism of fentanyl or methadone include:
Patients who are inappropriately prescribed opioids medications such as fentanyl or methadone, or who are prescribed these drugs in combination with other medications may be at risk of an overdose. In some cases, medication errors on the part of a doctor or hospital may lead to death from fentanyl toxicity, methadone toxicity, or mixed drug toxicity.
Patients whose loved ones have suffered a fatal overdose caused by the inappropriate prescription of fentanyl or methadone may qualify to take legal action against the doctor or other medical staff who prescribed the medication. The first step in taking legal action is to speak with an attorney who can guide you through the process of filing a claim.
The law firm of Heygood, Orr & Pearson has handled hundreds of fentanyl-related wrongful death lawsuits. Our attorneys have the knowledge and experienced to handle malpractice claims and other complications involving fentanyl and other powerful opioid medications.
For more information about filing a fentanyl lawsuit and to find out whether you may be eligible to file a claim, contact the lawyers at Heygood, Orr & Pearson by calling toll-free at 1-877-446-9001. You can also reach us by competing the free case evaluation form located at the top of this page and answering a few brief questions about your case to get started.