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New Jersey pro football fans likely remember star San Diego Chargers linebacker Junior Seau. In May 2012, he died at the age of 43 after shooting himself in the chest. Now, the doctor that treated Seau for sleeplessness is facing a claim from the Medical Board of California.
The physician, who also worked as the San Diego Chargers doctor before resigning in 2013, is accused of gross negligence in his treatment of Seau. When the NFL player had sleep problems, the doctor wrote him a prescription for a sleep drug called Ambien. He wrote Seau a total of 14 Ambien prescriptions during the final 18 months of his life. According to the complaint, the doctor failed to properly monitor Seau for signs of depression.
The complaint against Seau’s doctor states that Ambien can cause patients to have a greater risk of suicide. Patients who are suspected of being depressed should be given the lowest effective dose of the drug and then be closely monitored by their doctor. The same doctor has been sued for medical malpractice in the past. He was placed on a five-year probation by the state medical board in 2014.
Some prescription drugs are associated with severe side effects such as increased suicidal thoughts. When people are harmed while they are under the influence of a prescription drug, the doctor who wrote the prescription may have committed medical malpractice. An attorney representing the plaintiff in a lawsuit that goes to trial will attempt to demonstrate to the jury that the defendant health care practitioner failed to exercise the required standard of care.
For more information on the adverse side effects of some prescription medications and the prescribing doctors responsibility contact the Cherry Hill Medical Malpractice Lawyers of Folkman Law at 856-354-9444.
Source: USA Today, “Ex-NFL doctor accused of gross negligence in treatment of Junior Seau,” Brent Schrotenboer, May 1, 2016