Coumadin Side Effects

Tampa Medical Malpractice Lawyers Defend You in Coumadin Lawsuits

Coumadin is a blood thinner used to prevent blood clots. If you were injured from coumadin side effects caused by the negligence of a doctor then you may have a case for malpractice. Contact our experienced Tampa Medical Malpractice Lawyers to review your case for free and fight for the compensation you are owed.

Coumadin, also called warfarin, is a commonly prescribed anticoagulant or blood thinner used to prevent the body from forming dangerous blood clots.  While effective in preventing strokes, heart attacks, deep vein thrombosis (DVT), embolisms, and blood clots, the misuse of Coumadin can put patients’ lives at risk and is of particular danger to pregnant women.

Download Our Free Medical Malpractice Guide

The seasoned Tampa Medical Malpractice Lawyers at Morgenstern & Herd, P.A. can help you or a loved one with a misuse of Coumadin claim.  If you have an injury caused by coumadin side effects, we are committed to pursuing the compensation you deserve for the losses you have suffered.

What makes Coumadin so dangerous for pregnant women?

Coumadin should not be used during pregnancy or if you are breast-feeding.  Coumadin can cause birth defects in an unborn baby that may include:

  • Central nervous system defects
  • Spontaneous abortion
  • Stillbirth
  • Prematurity
  • Hemorrhage
  • Ocular defects
  • Fetal warfarin syndrome

Tampa Medical Malpractice Lawyer Betsey Herd can help if you were taking Coumadin at the time you became pregnant, or if your doctor prescribed Coumadin during your pregnancy and your baby was born with birth defects.  She is an experienced Tampa Medical Malpractice Lawyer who handles birth injury cases involving birth defects caused by Coumadin.

What makes Coumadin so dangerous for patients in general?

Doctors must carefully monitor patients taking Coumadin.  There is a very thin margin between a patient being helped or harmed by Coumadin.  A patient’s blood must be consistently monitored for its anticoagulation.

  • If the Coumadin level is too low, the patient is at risk for blood clot formation, strokes, and pulmonary embolisms.
  • If the Coumadin level is too high, the patient is at risk for severe internal bleeding, hemorrhagic stroke, and death.

It is extremely important for doctors to get an accurate medical history for each patient.  This helps determine what effects Coumadin may have on a patient.  Our attorneys can help determine if you have a case.

Frequently Asked Questions About Coumadin Side Effects

What is Atrial Fibrillation?

  • You have four chambers in your heart and sometimes people have a little bit of fibrillation or movement in their upper chambers.  Your physician may refer to that as atrial fibrillation. Atrial fibrillation can cause clots to form in the upper chambers of your heart so your physician may prescribe Coumadin.  This allows your blood to thin so that it’s less likely that you form clots. If your physician prescribes Coumadin ask questions about how you will be monitored.

What is Coumadin?

  • Coumadin keeps your blood from clotting.  A patient would receive this for an irregular heartbeat, known as an Atrial Fibrillation.  A patient with artificial or mechanical heart valves.  The prescription should be closely monitored as your therapeutic level increases.  If you suffer an injury, you should contact a Medical Malpractice Lawyer to start a potential claim.

What Should I Know About Coumadin?

  • Your physician should be monitoring the thinness of your blood by laboratory blood tests. A patient’s INR level, without Coumadin, should be 1.If you have a mechanical heart valve, the target INR level is 2.5.

How Should I Be Monitored When Taking Coumadin?

  • Your blood should be monitored by a laboratory test performed in the physician’s office, or in a laboratory. This should initially be done more than one time a week, and will cut down over time.

Who is Liable in a Coumadin Side Effect Claim?

  • Pharmaceutical companies may be liable for damages. Likewise the pharmacist. The pharmacist filling your prescription also has an obligation to fill your prescription correctly and answer any questions you have. You may have a claim due to preventable errors including:
    • Poor handwriting on prescriptions.
    • Similar-sounding names of prescription drugs.
    • Confusion about correct dosage amounts and instructions.
    • Confusing labeling and package content on both over-the-counter and prescription drugs.
    • Use of abbreviations.

What Other Coumadin-Like Prescriptions are Available?

  • Other commonly misprescribed medications include Avandia for diabetes and the anti-inflammatory Vioxx (discontinued).

What are the Consequences of a Malpractice Case for a Medical Professional?

  • In Florida, a healthcare provider can lose his or her license to practice after “three strikes.” What constitutes a strike, though, is not always certain. When you file a complaint, that complaint goes to the Florida Board of Medicine, which will generally not sanction an individual for an alleged medical error, but rather for documenting errors or serious, proven cases of malpractice. However, if a physician has multiple outstanding complaints, your case may directly result in the loss of a license.

How can I help avoid or combat medical negligence and malpractice?

  • The steps you can take to preventing medical malpractice are, for the most part, the same steps you should be taking to help your healthcare providers treat you. Be an advocate for yourself (or for your loved one). Do research. Ask questions. Tell your healthcare providers everything. And keep documentation.

When Florida Patients Suffer Coumadin Side Effects

If you feel that improper management or administration of Coumadin has caused you, your baby, or a loved one injury,  contact Tampa Medical Malpractice Lawyers Morgenstern & Herd, P.A. today to arrange a free initial consultation and preliminary case review.

Download Our Free Medical Malpractice Guide

Attorney Betsey Herd is a partner with Morgenstern & Herd, P.A.  and has achieved the highest rating of 10 on Avvo.