Physician Prescription for Opioids After Child Tonsillectomy


A physician ordered pain relieving medicine with codeine for a child following a tonsillectomy. It was alleged that the child subsequently died as a result of preexisting sleep apnea that was made worse by the codeine, which can accumulate in the body in some patients and thereby can breathing problems. It was also alleged that, given the child’s condition, the doctor could and should have ordered non-narcotic pain relievers instead. The case was settled confidentially.

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