The son of an 81-year-old woman who died less than 24 hours after being admitted to Metropolitan Hospital of Miami in March wants to know why his mother died of gastrointestinal bleeding when a simple injection of Vitamin K could have saved her life.
According to the son, the problem wasn’t that the physicians hadn’t ordered the potentially life-saving vitamin K injection for his mother; the problem was that there was none to be found in the hospital.
“It is mind boggling that something as simple as a vitamin wasn’t available in the whole hospital,” he told NBC6 Miami.
The elderly woman had been taking Coumadin (warfarin is the generic) which is a blood thinner taken to prevent blood clots. The use of the anticoagulant has to be carefully monitored because severe internal bleeding can be a complication of the drug.
Unlike Pradaxa, another blood-thinning drug that is currently being investigated by the FDA and has no known antidote to stop severe bleeding, Coumadin has an established, straightforward antidote: vitamin K.
The American Society of Health System Pharmacists states that due to manufacturing delays, there is a nationwide shortage of injectable vitamin K that probably will linger until sometime in May.
When NBC6 contacted another local hospital to see if they were also out of injectable vitamin K, hospital officials stated that they had reserved supplies to ensure that patients continue to receive proper care.
So the question still begs: why was there allegedly no vitamin K at Metropolitan Hospital of Miami when it was needed?
The hospital refused to comment.
A medical malpractice lawyer in Florida at Farah & Farah understands the grief that occurs when you lose a family member due to hospital negligence and/or a medical professional’s negligence. We are committed to helping our clients obtain the compensation that is due to them. Call our experienced and supportive team at (800) 533-3555 for a free consultation.