5 Ways to Prevent a Prescription Drug Error

Taking an incorrect dosage or the wrong prescription medication is not only dangerous, it can be lethal. Although your physician and pharmacist may provide exemplary care, prescription drug errors do happen from time to time. The best way to protect yourself from these kinds of errors is by taking a proactive approach to your healthcare.

How to Avoid a Prescription Drug Error

There are five things you can do to avoid taking a dangerous combination or dosage of prescription drugs:

  1. Keep a List: Make a list of your current medications and dosages. Always keep your list updated whenever there’s a change. All of your regular non-prescription medications and supplements should be on this list, too.
  2. Understand Your Prescriptions: When you receive a new prescription to be filled at the pharmacy, make sure you understand it before you leave the doctor’s office. Understand the reason for the medication, the dosage, potential side effects, contraindications and instructions on how to take it.
  3. Cross-Check with Your Pharmacist: When you pick up a new prescription, ask the pharmacist to explain the dosage instructions, possible side effects and contraindications. Make sure the information from your doctor and pharmacist match.
  4. Keep Everyone Informed of Your Allergies: Any time you receive a new prescription, remind your doctor and pharmacist of any allergies you have to certain kinds of medications. By mentioning your allergies to both of them, you are giving yourself two chances to avoid taking a drug that will cause an allergic reaction.
  5. Talk to Your Doctor about OTC Drugs: Before you start taking any new non-prescription drug or supplement (both nutritional and herbal), clear it with your doctor first. Even though these OTC medications and supplements don’t require a prescription, they could still cause adverse reactions or interfere with other medications you currently take.

Organizing Your Medications at Home

Another way to avoid a needless medication error is by maintaining a tight organizational system at home. This is especially important if you take several prescription drugs each day. Different types of systems work for different people, so find the one that works best for you and stick to it.

For example, some people prefer to put all of their medications in a pill organizer that divides the pills by the day of the week and the time of day. Others prefer to keep all of their medications in the original bottles and use a checklist to record each dose that is taken.

There are a number of ways to remind yourself to take your medication at the correct time and at the proper dosage level. If you often forget whether you’ve taken your pills, ask your doctor or pharmacist for recommendations that will help you to remember.

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If you are the victim of a dangerous prescription drug error that should have been prevented, contact the attorneys at Carey, Danis & Lowe today. Our attorneys are here to advocate for you and protect your legal rights. Call today or fill out our contact form and we will get in touch with you to set up a free consultation.

How a Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help

If you or a loved one has suffered injuries or even a fatality after an accident, you might need to enlist the assistance of a personal injury lawyer in order to ensure that your rights are protected. Your case might include complicated legal matters that need to be untangled by a seasoned professional. You might retain a personal injury lawyer for any of several reasons in order to seek a favorable resolution to your case.

Dealing with the Insurance Company and Claims Adjuster

The insurance company might try to offer you a low settlement in order to quickly resolve the case. Worse yet, they might not even want to pay for your injuries. The insurance company could even refuse to talk with you about your case because they blame you for the accident. In these cases, a competent personal injury attorney can show the insurance company that you mean business and that you plan to use the full force of the law in order to obtain the compensation that is rightfully yours.

Severe or Permanent Injuries

If your injuries are extremely serious or permanent, you might need a lawyer by your side to effectively represent you. For example, after a serious accident, you likely will face long-term therapy and ongoing expenses that could last for years or even a lifetime. You might need prescription medications, surgeries, mental health counseling, professional assistance or even round-the-clock care. Our personal injury attorney knows how to calculate the potential expenses associated with these types of injuries in order to determine an appropriate amount of compensation to request in a lawsuit. As the possible amount of your case increases in value, the possibility of a lower settlement amount and wider range of offers increases. Your attorney can fight for compensation at the top end of the scale. These types of cases are much more involved than a case with simple injuries and they require the help of a legal professional.

Medical Negligence and Malpractice

Studies have shown that medical negligence is more common than previously thought. Some of these mistakes can cause a lifetime of pain for the victim due to the incompetence of medical staff. In other situations, defective medical products can cause untold damage to a person. Examples of medical malpractice include medical mistakes, negligence or oversights, birth defects, adverse prescription reactions, surgical errors or vaccination complications. Handling the case will include considering informed consent, the standard of care, expert witnesses and the damages involved in the case. The legal rules and related medical issues are involved and detailed and need to be handled by an informed attorney.

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If you are looking for a knowledgeable and competent personal injury lawyer, you will want to retain someone with a reputation of concern and a track record of obtaining favorable outcomes in your case. At Carey, Danis & Lowe, we offer a no-cost and no-obligation consultation so that we can discuss your case and see how we can help you. We only charge you if we recover compensation for you. Call us today to schedule an appointment or fill out one of our contact forms.

What to do if Your Doctor Makes a Mistake

Not all medical errors are able to be prevented. Medical errors may occur even when every foreseeable precaution is made. If you ever do become a victim of a medical error, it is only natural that you will be worried about your current health, as well as any long-term issues due to the mistake that was made. A common problem for many people who have suffered a medical mistake is not knowing what they should do next.

Seek Medical Help Right Away

It is important that you make your health and safety a top priority when you are facing a medical mistake. If you have already suffered from the mistake or negligence from a doctor, you need to report the issue to that doctor and then seek medical treatment from another physician. If you are able to identify the issues early on, another doctor may have the ability to reduce the impact of the medical error.

How Serious are the Injuries You Suffered?

While many people believe that you should be able to easily recognize any type of medical mistake, the fact is that some can be without any type of symptoms, or symptoms that develop weeks or even months after the mistake took place. There are several different categories of medical mistakes:

  • A mistake by a doctor that did not cause any injury to the patient. Not all of the medical errors will cause an injury to patients. This could include the incorrect dosage of a medication or some other issue that does not cause any harm or long-term issues.
  • Minor injuries due to doctor mistake. This includes situations where a misdiagnoses is made by a doctor and then corrected quickly by that same doctor.
  • Serious injuries due to doctor mistake. Even when significant harm takes place to the patient, it may still be impossible to prove it. These issues can be extremely difficult to handle.

File a Report

If you have suffered from an injury or damages due to the mistake or negligence of a doctor, you need to file an official report. However, you need to ensure that you do this in the proper manner. It may be a good idea to contact the hospital for more information regarding how to do this, or even your insurance provider. No matter how small the mistake may seem, you need to file a report, which will help ensure that it does not occur again, to another person.

Seek Legal Help

There is not a reason to hire an attorney for every single case of medical malpractice; however, in some cases this will be necessary. No matter if you hire an attorney for filing a lawsuit or simply seek their advice regarding the issue, they can provide a beneficial partner when pursuing this issue further.

If you have ever been involved in a case where a doctor makes a mistake and need legal help or advice, contact the offices of Carey, Danis & Lowe. There is no reason to suffer alone when there is help available.

The Dangers of Texting and Driving

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, or NHTSA, driving a vehicle while you are texting is as much as six times more dangerous than driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. According to the federal agency, sending a text takes the driver’s eyes off the road for an average period of 4.6 seconds. If the driver were traveling at 55 miles per hour, it would be the same as driving the entire length of a football field while blindfolded.

Each year, texting while in a truck or car causes up to 3,000 deaths and over 330,000 injuries each year. This has become the leading cause of accidents and deaths for teenage drivers, taking the place of drinking and driving. However, it is not just a problem with teens, with 47% of adult drivers admitting to texting while driving. Drivers that are texting are as much as three times more likely to be involved with a crash than those who are not texting.

The Epidemic of Texting and Driving

Due to the huge epidemic that has developed around people texting while driving, entire ad campaigns have been developed all around the world in an effort to reduce the frequency it occurs. There have been a number of laws passed in various cities and states, which make texting and even talking on the phone without using a hands free device illegal and subject to both fines and tickets.

Laws Regarding Cellphone Use

Due to the huge influx of accidents, injuries, and fatalities that result from texting and driving, a number of states have issued laws, which include:

  • 10 states, including D.C. have prohibited every driver from using any type of handheld cellphone while in the vehicle.
  • 32 states including D.C. prohibit any novice drivers from using any type of cellphone.
  • 39 states including D.C. have prohibited all drivers from texting while they are driving.

Helpful Tools to Prevent Texting and Driving

For parents who are worried about their teen’s texting while driving, there are a number of tools that are now available. These have been presented by companies that are also concerned with the issue caused by texting and driving. Some of these technology rich tools include:

  • Drivecam: This will monitor a driver’s activity while providing real-time feedback, including video.
  • AT&T Drive Mode: This is a free mobile app for Blackberry and Android devices that encourage anti-texting.

The sad fact is that even with laws in place in the majority of states around the nation, texting while driving remains a huge problem, and one that causes hundreds of thousands of deaths and injuries each year. It is essential that more people become aware of the issue in order to address the problem and keep drivers safe while on the road.

Legal Help is Available

If you are ever involved in an accident that involves texting while driving, it may be important for you to seek legal advice. Contact Carey, Danis & Lowe for advice and counsel regarding your situation.

Symptoms of Whiplash

Whiplash is a common injury that is often mistreated or ignored due to a lack of understanding regarding the condition. In most cases, whiplash occurs due to someone being hit from the rear while in a stationary position. There are two terms that describe whiplash conditions: “whiplash injury” is used to described the damage to the soft tissues or bone structures, and a “whiplash associated disorder” is used to describe a more serious, chronic condition.

The good news is that whiplash is not usually considered a life threatening injury; however, it may lead to an extended period of partial disability. Due to the widespread occurrence of these accidents, the expense related to whiplash reaches over 30 billion dollars each year in the United States alone.

Recovery from a Motor Vehicle Accident

While the majority of people who are involved in a minor accident will experience a quick recovery without any serious or chronic symptoms, there are others who will continue to experience pain and other symptoms years after the injury occurs. Due to the variation of symptoms associated with minor injuries, many have suggested that whiplash is not necessarily a physiological injury, but rather the symptoms are created in order for a person to see some type of economic gain.

However, no matter the fact that there will always be individuals trying to mislead the system in order to earn some type of personal gain, whiplash is a real condition that has real symptoms.

The Symptoms of Whiplash

Some of the most common symptoms that are seen with cases of whiplash include:

  • Pain or stiffness in the neck
  • Headaches
  • Pain or stiffness in the shoulders
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Pain in the jaw
  • Pain or weakness in the arms
  • Visual disturbances
  • Pain in the back
  • Ringing in the ears

These symptoms will be most noticeable when you move your head forward or backward or side to side. You may also experience a tightness in your neck or a reduced range of motion.

If you suffer a more serious or chronic case of whiplash associated disorder, the symptoms you experience can include:

  • Anger
  • Depression
  • Anxiety and stress
  • Frustration
  • Drug dependency
  • Sleep disturbance
  • Post-traumatic stress syndrome

In addition to the symptoms that are listed here, people suffering from injuries due to whiplash may also enter into social isolation or litigation, which results from their symptoms.

Whiplash Treatment Options

If you do suffer from whiplash, in most cases, it will heal on its own. However, in order to recover you should use the following tips:

  • Ice the affected area.
  • Take painkillers that have been prescribed.
  • Use a neck collar or brace if necessary.
  • Apply moist heat to the areas that hurt.

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However, if your symptoms are more severe, or do not seem to dissipate after several days or a week, you may be suffering from a more severe case of whiplash. In this case, you need to seek treatment in order to have the problem treated appropriately.

If you are ever in an accident that causes whiplash, you may need to consult an attorney for assistance. If so, contact Carey, Danis & Lowe to better understand the rights that you have.

Can You Trust Your Insurance Company?

Responsible drivers know that their vehicles should be properly insured, but what they may not be aware of is the sometimes questionable behavior of their auto insurance companies. Recent research by the Consumer Federation of America (CFA), a non-profit advocacy organization for consumers, indicates regular discriminatory and manipulative actions by insurance companies designed specifically to benefit the insurer rather than the insured.

Discrimination towards Less-Educated, Lower-Paid Consumers

In 2013, the CFA conducted specific research geared toward uncovering discriminatory behavior in regards to premium quotes made to potential consumers. To discover indications of this practice, CFA representatives submitted applications for automobile liability coverage on the websites of ten large auto insurance companies. The applications included all of the same details with the exception of two variables: The applicants were either college-educated, white-collar workers, or less-educated, blue-collar workers. Results of the research confirmed that the auto insurance companies tended to determine rates based on criteria related to consumer education and occupation level. Despite virtually identical demographics on the applications, such as age, gender, driving record, and coverage type, consumers with lower incomes and less education were quoted higher premiums than their college-educated, white-collar counterparts were.

Insurance Delay Tactics for Claims

Auto insurance companies also have the reputation of using strategies to delay progress in cases involving automobile and tractor-trailer accidents and wrongful death claims. These tactics are used to postpone a pending resolution of legitimate claims. The delay tactics involve overwhelming the consumer with an abundance of paperwork and red tape related to the claim over such a long period of time that the consumer will be more likely to settle for inadequate compensation as opposed to allowing the process to be dragged out. This deceptive behavior by insurance companies has led some states to establish “bad faith laws” to protect consumers and urge the insurers to honor their own policies.

What Can Consumers Do to Protect Themselves from Dishonest Insurance Companies?

Unfortunately, insurance companies have developed a questionable reputation as the result of a long history of inappropriate and misleading behaviors toward their own consumers. The situation is made even more exasperating by the fact that insurance companies advertise and promote a helpful, honest, and consumer-centered image while not actually practicing their own philosophies and policies.

Consumers would be wise to stay informed about their rights and the specific details about the policies from their auto insurer. Vigilance and persistence are keys for a consumer to receive rightful compensation for claims. In the event that consumers are not able to convince insurance companies to proceed with fair compensation, consumers have the right to obtain legal representation. Knowledgeable attorneys that are fluent in insurance practices and strategies can protect the consumer from the insurance company’s deceptive tactics and hold the insurer accountable for fairly handling legitimate claims according to specific policy direction.

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If you are having trouble with your insurance company, contact Carey, Danis & Lowe today. We want to help you receive what is rightly yours and we are not afraid to help you stand up for your rights. Contact us today for a free, no-risk consultation visit to discuss your situation and options. Stop fighting with insurance companies and let the attorneys at Carey, Danis & Lowe help you.

When a Personal Injury Lawyer Is the Best Option

Life has a way of being unpredictable. Most accidents tend to have manageable, temporary setbacks. However, when outside variables and unforeseen complications occur, serious personal injury can result. Legal representation may be needed to negotiate a reasonable resolution on behalf of the injured party.

Severe and Long-Term Injuries

Personal injuries sustained in an accident should be assessed for the degree of seriousness and type of treatment needed. Severe injuries can result in long-term or permanent disability or disfigurement despite medical intervention and may warrant legal action. Incurred medical expenses, type of injury sustained, and duration of recovery are taken into account when determining the severity of the injury. These factors directly impact the amount of potential compensation the injured person could receive. Long-term and permanent injuries increase the probability of higher compensation. Legal representation can be instrumental in developing an agreement that awards the client compensation at the higher end of the spectrum.

Contaminant-Induced Injuries

Some personal injury cases can be more obscure due to complex legalities involved in the claim. In cases of toxicity, for example, environmental hazards can cause illness and irreversible health conditions when chemicals and other contaminants are inhaled, ingested, or otherwise consumed. Such industries responsible for chemical and other harmful exposures have taken steps to limit access to evidence and avoid potential legal ramifications. A knowledgeable attorney can navigate complicated legal terms and ascertain what scientific data is necessary to prove that compensation is warranted.

Medical Malpractice

Personal injury due to medical malpractice is one of the most difficult cases to resolve. Possible malpractice cases may involve a misdiagnosis, surgical error, medical negligence, birth-related injuries, vaccination complications, or mistakes directly affecting successful treatment of an injury or ailment. Many medical and legal details must be carefully considered: the existence of informed consent, the medical standard of care, potential expert witnesses, and damages. Damages of this nature can include pain and suffering, incurred medical expenses, and a lower quality of life. Due to the complexity of medical and legal standpoints, legal counsel can contribute expertise in assessing the facts of the case.

Difficult Insurance Companies

Insurance companies have earned the reputation of being difficult to deal with when filing claims. This is due to instances when an insurance company or agency refuses to pay on a legitimate claim. Depending on the type of injury and expenses incurred, legal action may be necessary to secure a settlement.

Obtaining Legal Representation

If a personal injury is determined to meet the criteria to warrant compensation, legal representation can examine the details of the case and advise the client on the best course of action to take. Referrals from acquaintances satisfied with their personal injury lawyers can produce a promising start to finding representation. Once candidates are narrowed down, further research can provide information on the lawyers’ relevant experiences, education, fees, and practicing philosophies. Having legal representation does not guarantee compensation, but it does ensure that if competently handled, a personal injury case will be taken seriously and justly resolved.

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If you or a loved one has been injured in a personal injury accident, contact the personal injury attorneys at Carey, Danis & Lowe today. There is limited time to file legal claims against responsible parties. Trying to handle these issues yourself with an insurance company might result in you obtaining far less compensation than if experienced legal counsel was protecting your rights to fair compensation from all the parties responsible for your injuries. Call Carey, Danis & Lowe today and see how we can help you.

Back-to-School Safety

A brand-new backpack stuffed with notebooks, pencils, and folders signals the inevitable end to summer for many parents and kids.

Drivers will encounter students heading to and from school on foot, on bikes, and by bus and they will need to adhere to certain safety standards to ensure that everyone arrives at their destinations unharmed.

Drivers and Walkers

Many students walk to school without an accompanying adult, and since children are unpredictable, drivers need to be aware of ways to avoid unsafe situations. Children will be directed by authority figures to use crosswalks at intersections. Vehicles should not block any portion of the crosswalk, which could cause students to veer toward moving traffic.Regardless of the presence of a marked crosswalk, drivers must allow pedestrians to cross when flashers are activated in a school zone and they are required to stop when directed by a sign or crossing guard.

Driving with Bicyclists

Drivers need to be cautious when navigating roadways shared by young bicyclists. Though people riding bikes are expected to follow the same rules as those behind the wheel, young riders tend to be particularly vulnerable to injury. They are often overlooked in traffic and they may lack the ability to properly gauge the safety of road conditions. Drivers can reduce the opportunity for danger by maintaining a distance of three feet from bicyclists when passing them, using proper turn signals, and allowing riders to cross the intersection before making turns that place the vehicle in the biker’s path. Children may not always practice proper signaling and they should be watched for sudden entry into traffic from driveways or behind parked vehicles.

School Bus Protocol

School buses provide the safest option for children to get to school, particularly when drivers follow the expected cautionary measures implemented to keep children from ending up in harm’s way. Drivers need to pay attention to signals indicating that the bus is about to stop for children and may not legally pass a bus actively loading or unloading students. In fact, all traffic on undivided roadways or vehicles approaching from behind a school bus must effectively stop during this process. The immediate perimeter around the school bus poses a substantial risk to children, and an appropriate clearance of ten feet should be given by surrounding vehicles.

Use Caution

Drivers can take a proactive role in reducing danger and promoting safe road conditions for children as they transition back to school. Despite being expected to behave responsibly as they walk, ride bikes, or take buses to school, children tend to be impulsive, distracted, and careless at unpredictable moments. That’s why it is the responsibility of the drivers to become familiar with local laws regarding proper driving procedures in school zones, residential neighborhoods, and areas where children are likely to be present. Drivers do have an obligation to be cautious, observant motorists around pedestrians, which overrides any right-of-way situations on the road. Ultimately, respecting standard driving procedures and exercising extreme care will prioritize a common goal: keeping school children safe.

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The attorneys at Carey, Danis & Lowe are available to help if your child is injured due to an accident while traveling to or from school. If you find yourself in a situation where injuries have been caused by the negligence of another, we encourage you to call our office today. We will listen to you and then give you the facts and options you need to move on with your life. Do not wait, but call us today so we can give you the professional advice you need during this time.

How to Avoid Medication Errors

While medications are prescribed to patients every day in an effort to relieve symptoms and cure illnesses, prescription drug errors sometimes cause more harm than good. As a patient, it is crucial that you aid your healthcare team in preventing medication errors by being informed and aware.

Inform Your Physicians

The best way to prevent negative interactions between the medications you take is to ensure that your doctors are aware of all the prescriptions. Make a list of each medication, the dosage, and the frequency you take it. Take a copy of this list with you to each doctor’s appointment and ask the doctor to place it in your file. Include over-the-counter medications and supplements like herbs and vitamins, as they can become the culprits responsible for medication complications.

Many doctors request that patients bring their medications with them to appointments. Even if your doctor does not ask you to do this, bring them along anyway to enable your doctor to assess your medication regimen.

Allergic reactions account for numerous medication errors. Always inform each doctor of your any allergies. Your doctor can then act as the gatekeeper who protects you from unnecessary allergic reactions. Provide your pharmacy with the same information so they can act as a backup and catch any errors that make it past your doctor.

Use One Pharmacy

To ensure that your pharmacist is able to catch potential drug interactions, have each prescription filled at the same pharmacy. This increases the odds that your pharmacist will quickly be alerted to any problems. When you have prescriptions filled at more than one store, it is impossible for the pharmacy to know about all of the drugs you are taking.

Educate Yourself

When your doctor prescribes medications for you, ensure that you understand the purpose of each medication. Ask questions and read the papers your doctor gives you when you leave the office. Read all the inserts that come with your prescriptions as well. While many people toss these papers in the trash, smart patients read the inserts to become informed about the proper way to take the medication and learn about possible side effects.

Measure Your Dose

Many medication errors occur due to improper dosing, particularly when it comes to liquid medicine. Teaspoons that we use at home for meals measure differently than marked teaspoons used for medication. Anytime you receive liquid medication, ask your pharmacy to provide you with the proper measuring implement. Never split pills in half without first checking with your pharmacist. While some pills can be divided safely, others cannot.

Watch Expiration Dates

Both prescription and over-the-counter medications contain expiration dates after which you should discard the medication. Some medications increase in strength as they age, while others lose potency. To prevent potential problems, watch the dates and dispose of medication that is past its expiration date.

While your medicine is intended to help you heal, medication errors can cause serious or fatal harm. By taking the proper precautions, you can increase the odds that medication errors never happen to you.

Contact Us

The attorneys at Carey, Danis & Lowe stand ready to help you deal with medication errors that occur because of someone’s negligence. This could be a doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or other healthcare provider. Call Carey, Danis & Lowe today to learn more about your options.

Free Report: Topamax Litigation: Understanding Your Rights

Topamax Litigation: Understanding Your Rights

Topamax is a medication marketed for the prevention of migraine headaches and for the treatment of the seizure disorder epilepsy.  Topamax is manufactured by a Johnson & Johnson subsidiary called Janssen Pharmaceuticals and it is one of the most commonly prescribed anticonvulsant medications on the market.

Topics covered in this report include:

  1. Topamax Litigation: Your Right to Compensation
  2. Topamax Litigation

Click here to read the whole article or download the PDF.