08/30/2010 // West Palm Beach, FL, US // Sandra Quinlan // Sandra Quinlan
Norwich, CT—A Norwich hospital and one of its doctors’ face pending wrongful death litigation after a woman was prescribed a high dose of a diabetes drug, consequently leading to her demise. The victim’s husband filed the $7 million wrongful death lawsuit on August 10 in New London Superior Court, according to an August 28, 2010 Norwich Bulletin report.
Richard Gault is suing the William W. Backus Hospital and Dr. Leslie Domalik on behalf of his late wife, Linda C. Gault. The wrongful death lawsuit contends Linda Gault was prescribed a 4-milligram daily dose of Glimepiride, a medication meant to lower the user’s blood sugar.
Nevertheless, Linda Gault suffered from Cushing’s syndrome, a hormonal disorder that forced her to have her adrenal glands removed. So while the 4-milligram dose of Glimepiride was already high for a healthy individual, it was exceptionally dangerous for Gault.
According to Kenneth Snow, a senior physician adviser at the Boston-based Joslin Diabetes Center, patients who lack normal adrenal functions should be prescribed no more than a 1-milligram daily dose.
Though it had allegedly been months since Linda Gault and Dr. Domalik met in person, the endocrinologist prescribed her the diabetes drug over the phone on September 4, 2009 nonetheless. Dr. Domalik practices at the Backus Outpatient Care Center’s Diabetes Management Center.
The suit further alleges Linda Gault took 6 milligrams of the medication between Sept. 4 and 5. While Mrs. Gault reportedly complained of fatigue resultant of the medication, Richard Gault maintained Cushing’s syndrome often made her tired, so he was not surprised.
Only two days after beginning her medication, however, Richard Gault found his wife unresponsive. He called paramedics who subsequently airlifted his wife to Yale-New Haven Medical Center.
The wrongful death lawsuit alleges Mrs. Gault went into hypoglycemic shock and was placed on life support until she died on September 25. She was 57-years-old at the time.
Snow added, “A well-known complication of the use of a (class of medicine such as Glimepiride) is hypoglycemia… It is my opinion that the Glimepiride that Ms. Gault took caused her hypoglycemia and ultimately her death.”
Richard Gault, who is the administrator of his late wife’s estate, is seeking damages amounting to $7 million. The case continues.
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