According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 46 people die each day as a result of prescription opioid overdose, accounting for 35 percent of all opioid-related deaths in 2017. But what about those who survive? What happens if you?
According to a study published in JAMA Psychiatry, adults who suffer an opioid overdose—and survive—are 24 times more likely to die within a year from suicide, diseases associated with substance abuse, and other medical conditions.
What Research Has to Say About Those Who Survive an Opioid Overdose
The American Journal of Managed Care® (AJMC®) recently conducted an observational study, looking at adults between ages 18 and 64 who suffered nonfatal opioid overdoses, but who died within one year of the overdose. The most common causes of death were disease associated with substance use, diseases of the circulatory system, and cancer. The disease rates were “significantly higher” for women, as were the rates of suicide.
When Physician Negligence Contributes to Addiction or Overdose
Did medical negligence contribute to your or your loved one’s overdose? If the negligence of your doctor, the hospital staff, or another medical provider caused you to suffer an overdose, you may be able to bring a lawsuit against the responsible parties for medical malpractice.
When a patient is suffering from severe pain, opioids may be the only effective option. If opioids are necessary, the prescribing physician has a responsibility to safely prescribe the drug and ensure the patient is taking them correctly. They must also monitor the patient throughout treatment.
In other situations, a non-narcotic alternative may be adequate to treat the patient’s pain. Even serious pain can sometimes be managed with alternative treatments. When a patient has a history of alcohol or drug abuse, it is especially important to consider non-narcotic options.
If you suffered an opioid overdose, your doctor may be at least partially responsible if they failed to:
- Try non-narcotic alternatives.
- Adequately explain the risks.
- Monitor requests for prescription refills.
- Closely monitor patients who remain on opioids for an extended period.
- Follow guidelines for prescribing opioids.
- Seek alternative treatment options for individuals suffering from chronic pain.
Newsome | Melton Can Help You Recover Damages
If medical negligence contributed to your overdose, you may be able to obtain compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other associated costs. At Newsome | Melton, we will seek the maximum compensation for which you are entitled. Possible damages to which you may entitled include:
- Medical expenses
- Loss of income
- Loss of future earning potential
- Pain and suffering
- Wrongful death
Contact a Medical Malpractice Attorney Today
Opioid abuse can be a deadly problem. At Newsome | Melton, we want to do our part to combat this deadly epidemic. If medical negligence is responsible for your injuries, you have a right to seek compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, and lost wages.
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