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October 2014 Archives

CDC to establish guidelines for keeping Ebola at bay

Medical errors can have serious consequences for patients, including serious injury and death. When it comes to fighting the potential threat of Ebola in the United States, though, medical error could have a much more wide-spread negative impact, potentially affecting large segments of the population, if the virus spreads unchecked.

Fremont pharmacy accused of medication mix-up

In medical care, patients expect that those who give them medical advice, administer treatment, and write prescriptions know what they are talking about and are careful to avoid errors. The same is true for pharmacists—we trust that our pharmacists are doing their job correctly and watching out for potential errors. That is why it can be surprising for patients when careless mistakes do occur.

Careless prescription of NSAIDs can lead to serious consequences

Most of our readers are probably familiar with the term NSAID, which stands for non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Common examples of NSAIDs include ibuprofen, aspirin and naproxen. As pain relievers, NSAIDs can be effective but they carry certain risks, such as stomach bleeding and ulcers, kidney or heart problems, and high blood pressure. Another potential risk, supported by some studies, is venous thromboembolism (VTE),

Overuse of antibiotics increasing incidence of resistant strains

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, over 2 million Americans are estimated to fall ill every year because of an antibiotic-resistant infection, with 23,000 of them ultimately succumbing to these illnesses. The problem is a growing one, and concerns all of us, particularly because studies have shown that part of the problem may stem from the unscrupulous use of antibiotics in medical care.

Ebola scare in Texas a reminder of the risk of ER medical errors

Readers have probably all heard of the current concerns about the spread of Ebola from West Africa to other countries, including the United States. The scare came from the fact that a Texas man had contracted the virus while travelling in West Africa. When he checked himself into a hospital emergency room, he reportedly notified a nurse of his symptoms—consistent with Ebola—and the fact that he had been travelling in West Africa, but she failed to inform other hospital staff, which led to the patient being released with antibiotics and exposing numerous others.

Today is World Cerebral Palsy Day

Most readers are probably not aware that today is World Cerebral Palsy Day, an effort which occurs on the first Wednesday of every October. The effort is promoted by a group of non-profit organizations and is observed in nearly 50 countries. According to the literature promoting the campaign, there are currently around 17 million people who live with cerebral palsy.