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medical malpractice Archives

Precautions that may minimize medication errors at pharmacies

For most people in Iowa, getting a prescription filled at a local pharmacy is a fairly routine act. However, a study referenced in a leading pharmaceutical journal suggests that dispensing mistakes could be responsible for just over 20 percent of medication errors than may adversely affect patients. While stats like this may be understandably alarming for anyone who makes frequent visits to a pharmacy, both pharmacists and patients can be proactive when it comes to minimizing errors with medication preparation and disbursement.

Researchers caution test could wrongly indicate metastasis

Some Iowa men with prostate cancer may undergo prostate-specific membrane antigen positron emission tomography imaging to determine whether the cancer has metastasized. While this is a popular test, a study that appeared in the September issue of The Journal of Nuclear Medicine cautions that it may misidentify benign tissue, leading to a misdiagnosis.

Possible sources of medication errors that may be overlooked

The widespread adoption of electronic health records (EHRs) is one of several efforts meant to provide added protection for patients in Iowa and the rest of the country. Nevertheless, there are some possible safety risks associated with how medication is prescribed and handled that may not be on everybody's radar. With EHRs alone, it's estimated that nearly 70 wrong-patient errors occur per 100,000 medication orders. The number of hospitalized patients receiving orders intended for other patients is also surprisingly significant, affecting one out of every 37 patients.

Tech startup developing software to stop serious surgical errors

Current medical procedures often separate patients in Iowa from surgical safety protocols. To help get patients more involved in the clinical steps prior to surgeries, a surgeon with 38 years of experience founded SafeStart Medical. The cloud-based system, which uses mobile applications, asks patients to review the administrative steps that create surgical plans.

Radiology-related malpractice frequently ends in death

While radiologists and pathologists are critical in the accurate diagnosis of cancer and other conditions, they are not always engaged by diagnostic teams in Iowa and other states. Coverys recently studied more than 10,000 of its medical professional liability claims, spanning the years 2013 to 2017 and all related to radiology, and it has come to some eye-opening conclusions.

Patients being sued for leaving negative reviews

While Iowa patients expect their doctors to have their best interests in mind, there are some doctors who do not listen to their patients or who do not provide appropriate service. Some patients who did not like the service that they received may turn to leaving negative reviews online. According to an investigation by USA Today, some doctors are fighting these negative patient reviews by filing lawsuits.

Study links frequent doctor burnout with malpractice

According to a study recently published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings, more than half of all doctors in Iowa and across the U.S. suffer from burnout. This is a condition that many workers in high-stress environments develop, and it is characterized by physical fatigue, emotional exhaustion and depression. Burnout has a negative impact on doctor performance, often leading to medical mistakes.

Development in the treatment for pancreatic cancer

Iowa residents who are suffering from pancreatic cancer may be interested to know that if their cancer does not spread to other parts of their body, they are more likely to live longer while maintaining a four-drug regimen than taking a single cancer medication. This is according to researchers who presented their findings at an American Society of Clinical Oncology conference.

LASIK surgery can come with risks

For some West Des Moines patients considering LASIK or other refractive surgery, they may wonder about the risks and complications that could accompany the procedure intended to improve their eyesight. It can be important to be aware of the potential risks before deciding to move forward with the procedure. Of course, while some risks may be unavoidable, other risks can be avoided when doctors are thorough and accurate in their approach to the surgery.

Blood pressure test results may not always be accurate

Blood pressure tests are common during a visit to a doctor. Iowa residents may be surprised to learn that their blood pressure test results are not always accurate, and these inaccuracies could present health challenges. Small things such as sitting on the bed at the doctor's office with one foot dangling off the side, engaging in conversation with the nurse or medical assistant performing the test, or having the blood pressure cuff on top the patient's sleeve could be enough to make a patient with high blood pressure appear that their blood pressure is normal, and vice versa.

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