Tuesday, 20 of November of 2018

New Study Finds Many COPD Patients Are Being Prescribed Dangerous Drugs

By Mark Favaloro, Medical Malpractice Injury Lawyer

What happened:

The publication Drugs and Aging recently reported on a Canadian study that found that a popular class of drugs commonly used to treat sleep and mood symptoms are still frequently prescribed to patients who suffer from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) despite being known to have potentially life-threatening side effects. The drugs are referred to as benzodiazepines and include medications such as Ativan, Klonopin, Serax, Valium and Xanax.

COPD involves constriction of the airways, leaving the patient with difficulty or discomfort in breathing, such as emphysema and chronic bronchitis. Many COPD sufferers are being prescribed benzodiazepines for symptoms of insomnia, depression, anxiety and shortness of breath.

But benzodiazepines are known to potential respiratory-related side effects, affecting breathing ability and oxygen levels at night. These drugs also affect memory loss, decrease alertness, cause falls and increase the risk of motor vehicle accidents. More alarming is that researchers discovered that 35.4% of new use of benzodiazepines occurs during an exacerbated episode of COPD.

Dr. Nicholas Vozoris, a respirologist and lead author of the study said, “These findings are new and they are concerning because they tell us that the patients most at risk to be affected by the adverse effects of this drug are the same ones that are using it with the most frequency.”


The Virginia Injury Lawyer Perspective:  

There are many drugs on the market that cause serious side effects, particularly in those patients they claim to help. It’s disturbing that physicians would be prescribing benzodiazepines to COPD patients who are at a high risk of experiencing those dangerous side-effects. Our personal injury law firm has reported on other dangerous drugs which have had tragic consequences for many patients.

Our personal injury lawyers have also represented many clients in dangerous drug and medication cases. Tragically, some of those incidents were wrongful death cases. If you or a family member has suffered serious side effects caused by a dangerous drug, contact a Virginia personal injury attorney.


Benzodiazepines can be dangerous for patients who suffer from COPD.












Helpful Info: 

If you or a family member has been injured by a defective or dangerous drug, you can begin to learn about your legal rights and options by reading this article.


Have Questions?

We maintain a library of attorneys’ answers to frequently asked questions regarding defective or dangerous drugs.


About the Editors: The VA-NC medical malpractice attorneys at Shapiro, Lewis, Appleton & Favaloro include medical and surgical malpractice lawyers licensed in both Virginia and Carolina. Our attorneys have experience handling medical malpractice cases involving hospital and doctors’ mistakes, as well as nursing home abuse and neglect. Check out our case results to see our track record of success in medical malpractice lawsuits, and also be sure to read our free medical malpractice reports Top 10 Tips From a Medical Malpractice Insider and Top 5 Surgical Errors. Attorneys with our firm have been listed among the Best Lawyers in America since 2008. Attorneys with our personal injury law firm have also been named Virginia Super Lawyers since 2010, an honor fewer than 5 percent of practicing attorneys receive.