Anesthesia awareness lawsuit

A patient committed suicide after being awake during his surgery:

The Baptist minister from Raleigh County, W.Va., killed himself in February 2006 ““- two weeks after he allegedly suffered the trauma of having surgery without anesthesia. The phenomenon of anesthesia awareness is associated with psychological conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder.

In a suit filed last month, Sizemore’s family say anestheliogist Dr. Bruce Cannon and nurse assistant Larry Rupe …

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Michael Moore’s Sicko

One stunt is detailed in the NY Post. Get ready for some single-payer love in his upcoming film:

Filmmaker Michael Moore’s production company took ailing Ground Zero responders to Cuba in a stunt aimed at showing that the U.S. health-care system is inferior to Fidel Castro’s socialized medicine, according to several sources with knowledge of the trip . . .

. . . But the sick sojourn, …

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Minute Clinic in the airport

Targeting the busy traveler:

Conveniently located in Terminal C at Newark Liberty International Airport, Harmony Pharmacy will redefine America’s retail drugstore shopping experience. From dispensing prescriptions to offering access to an on-site nurse practitioner to providing an exceptional shopping experience, Harmony Pharmacy is bringing together the best aspects of a traditional European pharmacy coupled with a service focused staff to reach today’s busy traveler.

(via The Health Care Blog)

Epidural overdose: An anesthesiologist responds

Tragic event, but as usual, news reports raises more questions than answers:

The drugs used in labor epidurals are usually a dilute local anesthetic and a small amount of narcotic. Using both types of drugs in combination allows lower concentrations of each individual drug to be used, hence improving the margin of safety for each. In labor epidurals, our goal is relieve pain without causing significant weakness. That is why …

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A cruise doctor is sued over a methadone overdose

The physician was faulted for not having the antidote on hand during the emergency:

According to the suit, at about 1:45 p.m. the next day, Ginsburg ran into the hallway screaming for help.

A nearby volunteer firefighter heard and started CPR on Ashley. Ginsburg called 911.

A nurse arrived at the cabin at approximately 2:10 p.m. Ginsburg told her that five of his Vicodin pills were missing.

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How pain patients are treated like criminals

A responsible narcotic-using pain patient writes:

I no longer go to emergency rooms for help with any pain. They might fix my broken bone but then ask, “How many hospitals do you go to to try to get extra drugs?” One ER doctor told me to “go home and play your little drug games.”

Problem is, for every responsible narcotic user, you have another hundred who play the drug …

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The hypertension conspiracy

Dr. Crippen thinks Big Pharma is to blame:

Dr Crippen’Â’s old fashioned” treatment for blood pressure costs a few pence a month, and the drugs he uses (such as beta-blockers and diuretics) have been around for years. They have a proven safety record. They are not going to produce any surprises. The only problem is that they do not offer any profit to the big drug companies.

Will Vioxx make a comeback in the wake of the Texas verdict?

“After August’s $253 million verdict against Merck & Co. in the nation’s first Vioxx-related civil trial, Lisa Stringer is worried that the loss will stop the company from bringing the only painkiller that gives her relief back to the market.

Stringer, 38, of Chicago, suffers from a spinal condition that causes nerve pain, particularly in her hands. …

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Overmedicating the Elderly

A new study from the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society states that almost one in three seniors are receiving medications “deemed potentially inappropriate for older people”.

Medicines on the list included antispasmodic drugs and propoxyphene. Several solutions to the problem are mentioned, all centered around good communication between doctor and patient, and knowledge of drug side effects in the elderly.


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