Heparin Overdose Cited in Toddler’s Death

A <"http://www.yourlawyer.com/topics/overview/heparin">heparin overdose may have led to the death of a toddler at the Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha. According to CNN, little Almariah Duque, just 23 months old, died Wednesday.

Heparin is a blood thinner, and the vital drug is used in surgery, dialysis, and to prevent blood clots in the bedridden. According to CNN, Almariah, who was born with a birth defect, had undergone a transplant at the Nebraska Medical Center of her small intestine, pancreas and liver. She was readmitted in February because of an infection.

A statement from the hospital said that it appeared an overdose of the blood thinner heparin may have contributed to the toddler’s death. The medical center is paying for funeral and travel expenses for the girl’s parents, who have no other children.

Almariah’s parents have also issued a statement. “We just want her voice to be heard and for this to never happen again to any child or adult,” they said. “We believe this was an honest mistake but one that needs to be corrected. We love her, we did everything we could for her and we don’t want this to ever happen again.”

Heparin overdoses do occur from time to time. In 2007, actor Dennis Quaid’s infant twins suffered a Heparin overdose at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles. Fortunately, the children recovered in that case.

In 2008, a dozen premature babies were overdosed with heparin at Christus Spohn Hospital South in Corpus Christi, Texas. Two of the children died in that instance.

In February 2007, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Baxter International issued a two-page safety alert warning of the fatal dangers of mistaking high 10,000 unit and low 10 unit dose vials of Heparin. The memo advised hospitals to double-check inventory to ensure dispensing errors did not occur and was issued after three infants died in Indiana when they were mistakenly given adult doses.

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