A Pennsylvania medical malpractice jury found $44 million in damages after a patient was left with permanent brain damage. This case was brought after a hospital failed to recognize an adverse reaction a woman was having to anti-coagulant medications.
Ms. Andrea Tate was put on the anti-coagulant drug, heparin. Anti-coagulation drugs like heparin are used in patients that are at risk of forming clots in their blood stream. They work by either breaking up the clots or preventing the clots from forming in the first place. When a patient is put on these types of drugs, they have blood drawn often to monitor changes in their body. Testing done on Ms. Tate’s blood, however, showed that Ms. Tate was on too much heparin. Instead of adjusting the dose or taking preventative measures, the lawsuit alleges that the defendants failed to address the medication errors.
Too much anticoagulative drugs without close monitoring can lead to bleeds within the brain. Because she went unmonitored, she suffered from a brain bleed and was found comatose. Ms. Tate suffered a brain injury.