If Your Loved One Died after Receiving Dangerous Doses of Fentanyl
On a daily basis, hundreds of people across the United States require surgery to cure a sickness or to fix an injury and can face a longer and healthier life as a result. However, during these procedures, doctors and nurses are required to administer potent drugs that require the utmost attention and precision. So, imagine the horror of learning that your loved one has not died from their surgical procedure but from a drug they received during recovery. Even worse, that drug happens to be fentanyl, one of the most dangerous opioids currently on the market.
At first, you will no doubt feel a mixture of anger and fear, followed by confusion as to what you are supposed to do next. However, with the help of a professional lawyer who has experience in wrongful death lawsuits caused by medical malpractice, you can create a viable case for court and get the justice your loved one deserves.
What is Fentanyl?
Before we start, let’s take a quick look at the drug in question.
Approximately 50 to 100 times more powerful than morphine, fentanyl is a synthetic (manmade) opioid that is currently listed as a Schedule-II drug (meaning it has a high potential for addiction). Frequently, doctors will administer fentanyl to patients who are recovering from advanced surgical procedures. In other situations, men and women may also take this drug to cope with chronic pain. Some common brand names for fentanyl include Actiq®, Duragesic®, and Sublimaze®.
The Danger of Synthetic Opioids
Did you know that roughly 130 people die from opioid-related overdoses in the United States on a daily basis? Besides run-of-the-mill prescription opioids and a variety of illegal painkillers like heroin, fentanyl is listed as one of the deadliest contributors to the current Opioid Crisis sweeping across our country. In fact, analysts have determined that the U.S. is currently crippled by a $75.8 billion burden, stemming directly from this health epidemic.
According to reports from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), fentanyl and other synthetic opioids have been categorized as the drugs most often involved in opioid overdoses. Overall, synthetic painkillers triggered 14% of opioid-related fatalities in 2010 and have been behind 50% of these incidences in 2016. Here is a closer look at the types of drugs involved in 42,249 opioid-related deaths in 2016 alone:
- Synthetic opioids: 19,413
- Prescription opioids: 17,087
- Heroin: 15,469
Options for Wrongful Death Cases in Delaware
The State Law of Delaware dictates that the family of deceased victims who has wrongfully died must follow certain guidelines. Under Title 10, Chapter 37, subsection 3722 dictates that an action may be maintained against a person who is found to be guilty of causing this death. Under subsection 3724, any action under this law will benefit the spouse, children, and siblings of the fatality.
Delaware Wrongful Death Attorney
Although fentanyl might be necessary for medical procedures, fatalities should never result from the medical treatment you can trust. If your loved one has died as the result of being administered too much of this deadly opioid, we at Edelstein, Martin, & Nelson and provide the assistance you need. Our experienced attorneys are passionate about our practice and are fully knowledgeable in the laws, rules, and statutes surrounding unfortunate malpractice incidences and wrongful deaths throughout the State of Delaware.
We fight for the rights of each victim and their closest family members and will help them receive the justice they more than deserve. For legal advice and for more information about our services, contact our office today at 800-300-0909.