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Join the Class Action Lawsuit…Before It’s Too Late!

Legal Update… If you would like to join the legal suit, you need to come forward now if you think you are within the statute of limitations as defined by the information found on this link: http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/statute-of-limitations-state-laws-chart-29941.html
OR If you discovered the injury within 3-4 years of the death. Your state may have rules which would extend the statute of limitations. The window of opportunity is closing for this!!!

Attorney Justin Williams is preparing a class action lawsuit.  If you want more information or possibly join the effort, please download the form here and email it to:  pwendt@cce-vic.com

 

 

Please comment here if you have taken steps to file a complaint against your doctor or hospital.

Have you been successful?  If so, why?  If not, what stumbling blocks have you encountered?

 


62 Responses

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  1. Justin L. Williams says

    I have searched for a class action lawsuit over amiodarone. I found mention that one was "going" to be filed against Wyeth for their version of amiodarone, but I have never found that one was actually filed. As an attorney with two cases, I can tell you the various package inserts if they truly warn of the dangers, are a problem for the users of the drug. However, my clients did not receive the kind of warnings that are now contained with the drug. In fact, one maker of the drug I am suing as of Jan. 2010 went to a 37 page package insert/product information sheet with the 10-17% toxicity figure on the first page.

    I, and my firm are willing to discuss anyone's legal rights. I would appreciate it if anyone who has information regarding an amiodarone lawsuit to email that info to me. I have only heard of one suit and it was against the doctor. My doctors had no knowledge of the negative statistics or the toxicity levels and percentages of amiodarone use, and a lot of the doctors are going to plead that same level of ignorance. They are not required to search out more information about an approved drug than that required to be provided by the FDA. Since the FDA did not have the full story about the drugs it is a vicious circle that goes back to the companies that made money off the sale of the drug. Justin L. Williams

    • crazybuslady says

      I am looking for an attorney. My mom was on amiodarone for 6 years. No dr told her about the lung part. I looked on the internet and told her I wanted her off of it. She told her dr that and he said her lung pulmanary report showed her lungs were excellent. She didn't have to worry about any of this. Two months later she was admitted to Marshfield hospital in Wi. The lung specialist there said her last lung pulmanary test was read wrong, that the numbers showed toxicity in her lungs. She was in the hospital for one month suffering before she passed away. She wanted us to do something so this wouldn't happen to someone else..I have no money for a lawyer, but want to start a lawysuit. It says on her death certificate….amiodarone induced lung toxicity……that is the main thing she died from and it says for days…..

      • Lost in the RedTape says

        The same thing happened to my father. He was on Amiodarone for 6 months. He passed away after being in the hospital for a month on Oct 27, 2012. I feel like I should be doing something but don’t know where to turn. Let me know if anyone out there has had success in getting this out.

        • Micki says

          I am so, so sorry for your loss.We lost my mom after six months on this horrific drug in 2009. We just winding down from the lawsuit and it’s not pretty. Please feel free to email me for more information
          Thanks,
          Micki and Debbie

          • Cindy says

            I lost my husband this year. Like you said “horrific drug”. Still need answers. But I need to do something to alert others of the side effects and painful death that one could suffer. People faced with taking this drug whether short or long term have to be made aware (from someone who experienced and watched what this drug could do). Your doctors can be too busy with the kickbacks that they receive to look at your best interest. In my husbands honor, my sympathies to everyone who’s loved one passed from this destructive FDA approved drug. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

            • Linda Wagner says

              I am grieved at all the stories about Amiodarone toxicity and the toll on patients and their families. My prayers go out to all. Our case involves the total loss of vision in my husband. We, too, were not warned of the implications of using this drug and were given no alternative choices. Three months after taking this horrible drug in combination with Simvastatin, (definitely toxic and deadly combination) my husbands eyes started to feel as though they were too big for the sockets. He got an appointment with his eye doctor who told us that “everyone who comes into she her ‘with this specific eye problem’ is on Amiodarone”!!! With that something should have “clicked” for those professionals who were treating him, but we were told that several months of following his blood pressure would give us insight into the problem. BP remained well in check and no further follow up for another nine month when he was FIRST sent to his cardiologists; then declaration of “TOTAL BLINDNESS. I am so angry, but am diligently doing what any good “advocate” for a loved one would do and am going to make certain that these types of negligence/malpractices come to a halt by making this story well known. Anyone with similar stories may contact me specifically if you are a Veteran’s Administration Health Care client as we can cover more territory as a group of advocates.

              • Susan says

                Linda, I am so sorry to hear all that you and your husband have been through! Thank you for documenting your story here on the website as it helps others who are considering amiodarone treatment or are dealing with its terrible effects. I hope you will consider joining the Facebook group called Stop Amiodarone. To do this simply establish a Facebook account if you don’t already have one. Once you are logged in the search box type Stop Amiodarone and our group will come up. Ask to join and usually within 24 hours you will be added.
                Again, thank you for getting involved! I hope we can end the widespread/off label use of amiodarone soon.
                Susan

              • Darrell Klein says

                Linda, thank you for your post. I am sorry to hear this and i write this to you today as i have been on this drug since February. I have lost half the vison in both eyes in the last three weeks. I am scared and don’t know where to turn. Stopped taking the drug yesterday and want to detox off of it. Worried that no Dr is going to know how to save my eyes. Waiting for Dr Appointment as I write this. They first called this an eye stroke. I am not so sure since both eyes are affected. Eye DR told me yesterday to stop taking the drug. Any suggestions? Thank You.

            • Lisa says

              My mother was put on this drug in October 2013. Within weeks her left arm was shaking constantly. Took her back to heart doctor. Wanted him to change meds. He said he didn’t think Amiodarone was the problem. Her arm wasn’t shaking until after she starting taking it. She also started falling about a month after starting Amiodarone. Never had to worry about her falling before. Four months later my mother got a very aggressive B-cell lymphoma. She died one month after diagnosis. She died seven (7) months after starting this drug. If there is a current class action lawsuit against the makers of this drug, I would like to join it.

          • Tammie Edwards says

            Mickie and Debbie
            So sorry for your loss. I lost my dad July 25, 2013 due to amiodarone toxicity. I would like some information on your lawsuit. My brother and I are very torn on what to do. He wants me to contact a lawyer, but I’m not sure I have the strength to go through it all. Anything you could tell me would’ve helpful. Thank you so much!

        • John H Wilson says

          Hi Micki and Debbie
          I am Canadian and I have Atrial fibulation for which my Cardiologist described Cordorone or generic Amiodorone. That was about 15 years ago and after 10 years I ran into problems with Pulmonary Fibrosis (about 2 years ago). I now have terrible breathing problems.
          The Canadian government had accepted the drug. The American government HAD NOT. Wyeth pressured the USA government to cave in an accept the drug and in fact push it for Atrial Fib in the states and you know the rest.

      • Rose Vavallo says

        Terrible . So sorry for your loss . My family has a similar story My Mother Inlaw passed away 22 months ago after a I month hospital stay . She passed due to lung toxicity from being on amnidorone for 2 years . Chest X-rays were done throughout the two years and didn’t indicate any problem with in her lungs .

        • Mary S. says

          My mothers story is on this site, her name is “Ruth” and you can see the hell that she went through in the hospital for almost a month before she died. Unable to breath and on a ventilator for the last 7 days of her life. Be sure to report it to the FDA as well, they won’t do anything about it but every time someone reports it to them it is recorded.

      • Sheila Keener says

        My mother died the same way, laying in the hospital for weeks unable to breath until her death. She had been in and out of the hospital complaining of the same thing , yet they could never figure out what was wrong until the last time she went in. By that time her lungs were full of 3 different infections. She had been on that med for 1 1/2 years. Her death certificate stated that she died from toxility of lungs due to medication. I have never sued anyone for this, but our friends and family say I should. She passed away 2 years ago on Dec. 21st. Have always wondered if I should talk with a lawyer about this. I am sorry for the loss off your mother, I know how hard it was to watch her die such a horrible death.

    • MICHELLE says

      I was given Amiodarone and now have drug induced toxic myopathy…most people are elderly and given this drug and are now dead that’s why you cant find anything. I would love to talk with you about what happened to me and what I can see clearly as Dr negligence and miss use of this deadly drug… Michelle L.Duplessie

      • Vince Hamblin says

        This is just a test

        • Susan says

          What are you testing? Please feel free to leave a comment. I try to check the page daily and will approve it if it is on topic. Thank you. Susan

          • Vince Hamblin says

            I have been on amoidarone 200 mg for two years for A-Fib and was not warned of the possible side effects or given any test for toxicity levels. I did not know just how toxic this drug can be, at any rate my symptoms started like most I have read online, mild cough, 100 plus temp. and mild short of breath which started on 3/15/2014, I went to see my Doctor and finely she did a x-ray on 3/20/2014 and was admitted to the hospital stat, a pulmonologist was called in and thank god or I don’t think I would be hear now telling you this story. The Doctor told my family from day one he new exactly what was going on when reviewing my medication and with more x-rays, he also told my family to prepare for the worst on 3/21/2014 I was in resp. failure and was placed on a ventilator 100% oxygen and given paralitic to calm down wile on the ventilator. I was on vent. for 8 days and extubated because of side effects of the paralitic on my legs and was touch and go for next 5 days on hi flow oxygen @ 100% with pulse Ox only in the hi 80’s to low 90’s and slowly improved over time. I am so blessed to be telling this story, but would never wish this on my worst enemy, what is so ironic is I just retired in October and received my first social security check in Feb. and my occupation is Respiratory Therapist for last 45 plus years and now I can say I have first hand experience with a very deadly and brutal syndrome turning your lungs completely off. From what I have been told most do not survive or even make it to the hosp. or are not diagnose properly, I also see that people with amoidarone toxicity have nowhere to go for help legally, the ball was definitely dropped on any follow up care or education, must read all product lititure on any medication you are taken and trust no one, sometimes even your Doctor. The date is 4/24/2014 and recovery is very slow, from where I was I am doing very well walk with oxygen and walker and just started taken bath on my own ( yeh ). I am so glad to be alive( Thank you everyone Vince Hamblin )

    • Iraline lewis says

      Hi my email is ira120472@gmail.com. This is crazy I just saw this drug on my mother in law death certificate. I was telling my husband her death was weird. She was put on a drug. Then we were told it was the wrong drug. So they took her off. But my mother in law never got better. She went into the hospital. Soon they put her on dialysis. She then had acute liver failure, kidney failure and respiratory failures. Then died in the hospital. We have just been lost my husband wants to sue but he is not sure what action to take.

  2. mkakin says

    @donna

    Dear Donna—my deepest sympathies for your loss. We all have felt the same helplessness and outrage, and each new story of needless death deepens my own feelings. I hope you will please share your husb's story in the OUR STORIES section. This isn't just a memorium, it's a call to arms. If our stories can convince just one person to decline taking this deadly drug, or to act quickly in getting off it, it is so worth it. It really puts a human story to all of the news clippings, links and statistics here, and is our most powerful tool.

  3. donna says

    I too lost my sweet husband three months ago and the Doctors said "probable Amiodarone Toxicity, " but on the death certificate, it just says Pulmonary Fibrosis. I am sooooo bitter and still cry most of the time because it was all so unnecessary. He was doing so good with just his pacemaker/defibrillator and then the Doctor decided to try the Amiodarone. Three years later he went down fast while we stood by helplessly watching him drown. God help us all!

    Donna from Missouri

  4. alcham says

    Sorry! Alonso

  5. alcham says

    Found a promising USA legal site. Google Parker Waichman Alonson LLP and then enter amiodarone in the search box. They seem to be looking for work and have a track record. You submit details to them and they give you an assessment by return. Post if you have any success with them.

  6. davenycity says

    great blog thank you

  7. Marla says

    @Mary Seres

    Mary–I am so sorry for your mother's death, and her suffering. For me, the outrage deepens the farther away from my dad's death I get, and esp when I read story after story here and on our FaceBook STOP AMIODARONE page. And both these venues are just the tip of the iceberg! Imagine how many people who don't use the computer have been affected by the drug? Please post a photo of your mother and her story on the MEET AN AMIOD VICTIM page here. Susan and I have shared our dads' stories. If we had all been able to read this kind of information when our loved ones could still have been saved, what a difference it would have made.

  8. Mary Seres says

    Marla, the same thing happened with my mother. We were so devestated with what had happened to her and how it happened and how fast. One day she isn't feeling so good and goes to the doctor for a pacemaker check and that's out of whack, and then they adjust that and send her for an EKG but the doctor never said anything about that or the pacemaker adjustment and then comes in and sits down and says, "well how are we doing today"? my mother replied that she had been having a little breathing problem and he said, "well let's take a look see". so he pulls his stethescope out of his pocket and listened to her back and then the front and said, sound clear to me". Yet 9 days later the paramedics are taking my mother to the ER and a Chest Xray is done and her left lobe is almost pure white and the right lobe is about 3/4 white and she is admitted. The pulmonary specialist comes in and says, "we are going to do a thoracotomy to see what is

    going on in those lungs." the other pulmonary doctor came in while my mother was laying there in bed with her eyes closed and said, "have you thought about what you want to do if she goes south" I looked at him and them motioned to him to go outside the room. There he explained to me that her lungs were very damaged and that she might not pull thru this and that they were going to do the thoracotomy and that she would be on a ventilator afterwards and then slowly brought off of it to see how she would do. She was on the ventilator before they were able to wean her off and then she was moved to a regular room. PT came in the next day and tried to get her to stand up and sit for awhile, which she did and then became tired. The following day I cam in early because she called me and ask if I would come there and that was about 6:00 a.m. in the morning. I told her I had to wait till 8:00 when they would open the doors. When I got there her O2 monitor was turned off and I ask the nurse what was the reason that they turned it off and she said, and this is a quote" "it made too much noise during the night". That's what it is suppose to do make noise when your oxygen levels drop below a certain point. I flipped the switch back on, my mother looked good her color was good and then all of a sudden the monitor started ringing and I kept telling her to take some deep breaths but to no avail. Her O2 levels were dropping fast and faster and I called for the nurse, and within minutes they had her back in ICU and the doctor was preparing to intubate her again and put her back on the ventilator. That was the last I saw of my mother awake and conscious. She was on the ventilator for the next 7 days, building up fluid in her body, her liver, kidneys, and everything in her body shutting down. She had a strong heart and it took a long time when the ventilator was stopped after 7 days for her heart to finally stop beating as we sat by her bedside for all those days, day and night. No one deserves to die like this and for what, to feed the coffers of some pharmaceutical company. I often wonder when I see those neatly dressed pharmaceutical company employees hauling their little suitcase full of drugs into the doctors office giving him samples… what makes them any different than the drug dealer out on the street corner selling cocaine, or heroin or meth… those drugs are just as deadly as the illegal one's but they can get away with it…

    This needs to stop, and it needs to stop now. We didn't have an autopsy done on our mother because at the time we felt she and her body had gone thru so much, we had gone thru so much sitting there day and night beside her bed for almost a month watching her basically explode and grow bigger and bigger and bodily fluid. I too wrote to the California AMA about her cardiologist but they found no negligence on his part. They are so interested in covering their own backs they could care less about the oath that they take when becoming doctors. We need professional help…

    Mary Seres

    Laguna Hills, CA

  9. Mary Seres says

    Wow, I finally found all of you. There for awhile I was a little lost and thought everyone had vanished off the computer. I think that the FDA, the Pharmaceutical Companies, the doctors, the pharmacies, all of them are at fault. When I said something to my mother's doctor his reply was that we have been using Amiodarone for years and have had no problems. I guess the fact that they put them on low dosages 200mg. and don't adhere to the protocol that this drug calls for when putting a patient on it that they feel safe. Well my mother isn't safe, she is buried six feet under due to this drug and it was a needless painful horrific death and no one should have to die this way. The WARNING that the drug companies were suppose to put on it was delayed by the FDA dragging it's feet, and then the protocol for putting a patient on this medication was to be a "life threatening" atrialFib and other medications were to be used before ever putting anyone on this drug. If it was determined that nothing else worked and it was a life threatening situation then the patient was to be admitted to the hospital, chest Xrays done, blood work done and observed to see how the patient was doing on this medication. None of this was done for my mother. Not even when she complained to the doctor that she was having trouble breathing… you would think that a doctor would atleast send you for a chest Xray to make sure, and especially when you go in for a pacemaker check and your heart is in constant atrialfib, they are all to blame and I hope that someone can find an attorney somewhere somehow soon to put a stop to this medication and the deaths and destruction that it is causing to loved ones.

  10. Marla says

    Joan–I think we have traded remarks on the Topix board before. Again, my truest sympathies about losing your husband to this awful drug. Here and on the FaceBook page, we read the same stories over and over. A campaign of awareness is one thing we can do something about, and this is a good start. Will you print some of Susan's flyers and drop them off at pharmacies, senior centers, libraries, etc? I've wondered if we shouldn't coordinate the flyer effort–everyone all over the country do it during a certain week, and maybe local media, if not national, would pay attention? Get everyone you know to join the FB page, too. I think we have such a good start there, an ongoing conversation that is getting some attention.

  11. Susan says

    @Joan Whalen

    Joan, your experience sounds very much like what my father went through. It was just a horrible death and he experienced great suffering. I believe that he also did not know of the terrible risk he was taking with Amiodarone. For that matter, I don't think the medical community did either since they tried to treat him initially for everything but this drug.

    I can see where a lawsuit against the manufacturer would be difficult. What have been the pitfalls against the doctor?

    Myself, I would like to see this drug restricted to only those in dire need. I just wouldn't want anyone else to go through this.

    I am not exactly sure how we can effect change to secure that end but I feel that getting it out in the open, talking about, and never forgetting their plight will certainly help move us in the right direction.

    Joan, please feel free to come back to this site and comment. We all have lots to learn from the road you have traveled.

  12. Joan Whalen says

    I am very glad to have an opportunity to voice my heartsick feelings about the toxic effects of amiodarone, My husband died about a year and a half ago from pulmonary fibrosis caused by amiodarone. He was on this drug for 5 years. He died a horrible death,not being able to breathe and it effected every organ,even brain damage,kidney failure,massive infections.stroke and blood clots in ICU for 10 weeks.We were never told about the fatal lung damage side effects. the doctors are required by the FDA to monitor patients on amiodarone with lung functioning tests every 3 to 6 months. this was never done, the other side effects of his weaknessw.loss of weight,blue nose.tremors and thyroid condition were attributed to nothing of significance to alarm us of a problem . We are on our third lawyer,we have contacted the FDA. My daughter has written to every senator in the US, I just wrote toAARP magazine in reference to an article'when medicine makes you sick'because they did not list amiodaone in their article concerning drugs that cause toxicity, AARP wrote me back,thanking me for my interest but because of limited space could not print my letter. I even tried to file a class action suit but that didn;t work because it is the doctors fault for not giving patients all the side effect information and noy monitoring their patients, We need it to be mandatory that the drug can not be given unless the neccessary tests are given,this is what we must try to achieve, I will not give up on this; Iwear a rubber bracelet with amiodarone toxicity so I will never forget my cause and the loss of my husband .Richard,Good luck and my concerns for all on this website,

    • crazybuslady says

      HI..sounds what my mom went through, she was on it for 6 years….the dr did a lung test every 6 months, but he read the numbers wrong on the last report….she died 3 months after that….I want something done….my mom was not a life and death situation, she could have taken other pills…..I also have a fib, am having my second cariacversion done next week to straighten out my afib as it has been 7/24 since mom entered the hospital 6 weeks ago.. the pill should not be taken by anyone unless they would die without it, mom knew nothing about the effects until I told her, and then she went to her dr and said she wanted off of the pill..he said no reason to be off it as her lungs were great……she died 3 months after he said that from the amiodarone toxicity in her lungs….it is on her death certificate…

  13. Marla says

    A little background about liability issues…

    Here is a 2004 article about the FDA dragging its feet to include upgraded warnings on Cordarone and Pacerone. It seems like a news article, but I found it on a lawyer site, so not sure. Also, it includes mention of a 2003 (?) lawsuit in New Jersey, citing over 1000 deaths and numerous injuries. I wonder what became of this? Perhaps it is the $10m optic neuritis case I posted mention of here earlier.

    http://www.yourlawyer.com/articles/read/8906

    The package inserts were finally updated in 2005 (I wonder if this was the legal outcome of the sports celebrity lawsuit I gave a link to earlier, too?), and below are links to the inserts which must be provided with every prescription. The info has undergone some revisions in the 5 yrs since, but a lot of the key information is right here, from 5 years ago. Similarly, 2005 letters were sent to all doctors and pharmacists stressing these same warnings. The drug manufacturers are legally protected by these disclaimers; they warn of every possible side effect that people tell of here.

    CORDARONE:
    http://www.fda.gov/downloads/Drugs/DrugSafety/UCM

    PACERONE: http://www.fda.gov/Drugs/DrugSafety/PostmarketDru

    So, how many of us SAW these inserts? How many of us were told ANY of this by a doctor until too late in the game (if ever)? The cardiologist's negligence in prescribing this drug to my father was the basis of the complaint I filed with the state medical board. These kinds of complaint processes are available to all of us, and I would urge you to file one if you have not already.

    Everyone here landed in this situation because a doctor did not fully understand amiodarone's toxicities and did not recognize evident symptoms of it. Yes, it's regrettable that the pharma giants skate free and clear and make the billions. But I don't see that we have a leg to stand on against them when their own literature (and the FDA's) warns of each one of the dreaded "side" effects.

  14. Susan says

    @Ralph from Mesa, Arizona

    Ralph…who is to blame for this sad state of affairs?

    Myself, I feel that it is the doctors that prescribe it when it's not a life threatening situation.

    This drug is only for people that have absolutely no other chance to live.

    I think that there should be much tighter control on the way it is prescribed.

    In addition, patients should know that they are taking on life threatening risks when they take it.

    As it stands right now, there just isn't enough disclosure about the real risks involved.

    Ralph, we would love to have you join the Facebook discussion also!

    Are you a member? Log in and put Stop Amiodarone in the search box.

    Don't want to be a member?!! That's ok too!

    Just let me know and maybe we can work out a way for your comments to show on FB.

    Susan

  15. Ralph from Mesa, Ari says

    I came across this website quite by accident and glad I did. I have been on another Amiodarone related website for quite a while trying to organize a class action law suit against the manufacturers of Amiodarone. (please check it out)

    http://www.topix.com/forum/drug/cordarone/T844U56

    On this website, there are many who seek justice for their loved ones that have died from Amiodarone Toxicity, Pullmonary Fibrosis and other lung deseases from the drug. I am a victim of the drug but am still alive. I was on the drug Amiodarone for over 12 years. I complained many times of shortness of breath to various doctors and they all claimed it was COPD. I have not smoked for 24 years, and before that I was a sociable smoker. They had to blame the breathing problem on something, but never the real culprit, Amiodarone. At present I am on oxygen 24/7, have developed all kinds of side effects from the drug that not one doctor associated with Amiodarone. Who is to blame? (Amiodarone has a high iodine content and that alone ruined my thyroid. I am on synthroid for the rest of my life thanks to Amiodarone) Should we sue the Wythe manufacturer for not instructing the doctors with enough information about the side effects or the doctors who just did not know enough to tell us not to take the drug in the first place. Good question! If anyone out there in cyberspace can get a bonified class action law suit going, I will get you at least 10 more people that will jump on and help in any way they can.

    Sincerely,

    Ralph from Mesa, Arizona

    • crazybuslady says

      I can get you 20 to sign if anyone can get a class action lawsuit going…….my mom died and it was on there that the main thing was amiodorone induced lung toxicity ..she complained of being out of breath, she had a pulmanary lung scan every 6 months, but the last one, the dr read the numbers wrong…3 months later she died with spending one month in the hospital.suffering, trying to breathe…this is so wrong and someone needs to help us..

  16. Marla says

    @Susan

    I feel so wary of the online lawsuit thing. I know it could well be legitimate, but surely we would have heard something if there was a legitimate class action suit? I mean, there are scores of us on the Topix boards alone seeking redress or answers. I did find two interesting mentions of a amiodarone lawsuits online:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2005/06/23/nyregion/23scha

    This is about some sports celebrity whose family sued for amiodarone induced damage. The outsome wasn't yet settled when the article was written in 2005.

    ALSO:

    http://www.eplabdigest.com/articles/How-will-son-

    The second is an article about an amio alternative, dronedarone. But it also refers to a successful $10m lawsuit against amio manufacturers in 2003, over resulting optic neuritis.

  17. Susan says

    I came across this website.. .http://www.onlinelawyersource.com/amiodarone/index.html
    Does anyone have experience with it?

  18. Susan says

    Marla, I think the fact that we both never received any additional billing is very interesting. I held my breath for a long time thinking that I was going to have a big fee to pay but it never came and it's been over 3 years.

    I did have an autopsy done and I took all of the medical records to a lawyer. They came back and said it was Amiodarone but we don't handle cases like this. I just stopped there and haven't done anything with it since. However, the cruelty of his death still bothers me. He was a good guy and didn't deserve to die like that.

  19. Marla says

    I was anxious to see what doctors would say on his death certificate. They listed COPD as his primary cause of death, and amiod toxicity as a "contributing" cause, which is patently absurd. It is the other way around, if in fact he even had COPD. They did not start using that term until they could not bring his bronchitis under control for weeks–he was never in his life told he had COPD before this episode. Of course I realize now they could not cure his bronchitis b'c the incidentally prescribed amiodarone was killing his lungs even as they were treating them. But it was some vindication that they put it on there at all. I think they knew I'd be camped on their doorstep for life if they had not.

    Having missed the opportunity for an autopsy, I looked online to see what reporting systems were in place to file complaints (for disciplinary action) against the hospital and the prescribing cardiologist. I filed with the Texas Dept of State Health Services (Health Facility Compliance/Patient Quality Care Unit, whew) against the rehab, where at least 2 or 3 doctors ignored his symptoms of pulmonary toxicity for two weeks. I got a ridiculous reply from them, which made a lot of pointless noise about being within regulatory guidelines and completely ignoring the salient facts in my complaint. I filed a complaint with the Texas Medical Board against the cardio. It is still "pending." I have no idea if this means it's not begun, or if they are truly doing anything. One woman I was in touch with at the TMB said my father's medical records had been subpoenaed back in March. It's now August, and no word. I will certainly post it here if this results in anything satisfactory.

    One thing I have found curious is that none of the doctors nor the rehab hospital presented us a bill for insurance copay. I have checked with my father's insurer and they tell me that all of his medical bills are shown as resolved, no outstanding copays. Perhaps I am misunderstanding his insurance copay system, but I don't think so. I have a good friend who is a high powered hosp administrator in Boston, and she grimly said, "Yes, it's sort of a If You Kill 'Em, Don't Bill 'Em" policy. If this is true, it seems to imply liability, doesn't it?

    But I have become less resigned to his death as time has passed. If a lawsuit gets underway, I will throw my hat and my energy into the ring.

  20. Marla says

    This is truly the big question. I think many of us who have had elderly parents die on this drug are struggling with the issue of whether suing makes any sense, given that it cannot bring back our loved ones. And everyone feels overwhelmed by the medical-pharmaceutical giants. I did not order an autopsy (which seems the only logical place to start with an investigation) on my father for many reasons. I was skeptical of anyone coming forward to support me. I was exhausted and in shock, and my poor father was at least free of the tubes, masks, needles, pills, and interventions which made the last four and a half weeks of his life pure hell—I could not hand him over to them for more. I told the attending ER physician who annc'd his death that I would like to find out if a postmortem lung biopsy would prove anything, and he said, "You'd have to ask a pathologist." As if a pathologist were standing by at midnight. No doctor with whom we had a rel'ship came to ICU that night to discuss his death or an autopsy. A male nurse I had never seen stuck his head in the curtain and said, "I'm on the phone with the primary. Do you want an autopsy?" That was the last we heard from a man who had been my father's personal doctor for over 14 years. No one later contacted us, b'c the primary, the pulmonologist and the prescribing cardiologist are all in the same clinic practice, covering each other's behinds. Lastly, insurance does not pay for an autopsy, and no one is there to say, "They are $999. tonight." Or $9,000. Or what. I had no idea what it would cost.

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