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Prince’s Family Taking On Hospital In Misdiagnosis Lawsuit

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Recent studies revealed that the number one reason for medical malpractice lawsuits was a botched diagnosis. That is precisely what the surviving members of the late pop icon, Prince, are alleging in a lawsuit against the hospital that treated him for an opioid overdose. The overdose occurred in 2016 after a show that Prince performed in Atlanta. His private jet had to make an emergency landing after the pop star had become unresponsive.

Now, the family is alleging that the care he received at the hospital was a “direct and proximate cause” of misdiagnosing his condition. Apparently, Prince believed that he was taking Percocet the night he died, but the pills themselves actually contained a much more potent street-grade version of the drug fentanyl.

Fentanyl is said to be 30 to 50 times more potent than heroin and is fatal in even very small doses. Police launched an investigation into Prince’s death and were able to determine that the drug Prince took was not Percocet, but fentanyl. About a week later, Prince took another dose and died. Since authorities could not determine the source of the drug, no one was charged in the death.

But the family believes that the hospital that treated Prince should have known that the drug he took was fentanyl and not Percocet.

The Narcan Factor

Narcan is an anti-opioid drug that is used to revive patients that are suffering an overdose. The drug reverses the effects of opioids in the body. For most opioids, it only takes one shot of Narcan to reverse an overdose, but those who are overdosing from fentanyl routinely require more than that because of how powerful fentanyl is.

This is a key component of the plaintiff’s argument since Prince refused to have his blood and urine tested after the incident.

A Difficult Case to Win

While the laws governing malpractice cases tend to differ from state to state, the only evidence that the doctor could have had to indicate that the drug Prince overdosed on was fentanyl and not Percocet was the amount of Narcan it took to revive him. It’s apparent that the doctor’s failure to properly diagnose the drug that caused the overdose resulted in the death of the beloved pop star, but in order to prove medical malpractice, the plaintiffs must show that she and others failed a certain standard of care.

The pills themselves were sent away to a pharmacist to be tested. They had been made to look like a generic form of Vicodin, and the pharmacist who studied the pill concluded that it was hydrocodone. The plaintiffs will key in on these facts in order to prove that the doctors and pharmacists in the case failed to identify the pill properly.

Have You Been Injured by a Misdiagnosis?

Then you may be entitled to damages. The Miami attorneys at the office of Alan Goldfarb, P.A. have handled numerous misdiagnosis lawsuits in the Miami area. Give us a call at 305.371.3111 and will begin discussing your case right away.

Resources:

cbsnews.com/news/medical-errors-now-3rd-leading-cause-of-death-in-u-s-study-suggests/

nytimes.com/2018/04/23/arts/music/prince-overdose-wrongful-death-lawsuit.html

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