What can cause a medication incident?

Medication accidents can have serious consequences such as hospitalization or death. Indeed, for various reasons, these accidents caused by the use of medication are very likely, especially in the elderly or vulnerable people. What are the identified causes of medication errors?


A medication incident or serious adverse event can occur when taking one or more medications. There are no specific symptoms to identify a medication incident, but there may be symptoms ranging from dizziness or diarrhea to more serious consequences such as hospitalization or death. The patient, whether vulnerable or not, may be the main cause. The patient's biological and neurological parameters may have changed so that the medication is no longer appropriate. It could also be that the medication is poorly administered, forgotten, or taken several times, causing discomfort and then a drug accident. This serious adverse event can occur in a patient who is experiencing a variety of emotional disorders such as depression or family and environmental factors that would make the situation worse. Self-medication or overuse is not a cause to be ruled out.


Medication accidents can also be caused by the medication itself. Without having considered the instructions on the adverse effects of a drug, the patient's situation could worsen. Also, a medication incident could be caused by multiple medications or drug interactions. One drug taken with another can cause adverse reactions. Before taking any medication, you should check the different contraindications. This is just as valid for diets, eating habits or addictions that would cause this accident. A drug could not be administered with alcohol consumption, for example.


Many times, a medication incident can result in hospitalization or death. In spite of the fact that the instructions and the times of intake are respected, the patient is a victim. For different reasons, the patient has had several consultations and prescriptions from different specialists or general practitioners. This, by starting little by little and each time different drugs causing an overdose or a misuse of the latter. It may turn out that a prescription is useless or ineffective in a patient where the doctor has not performed any controls. A drug accident can be avoided if all these parameters are considered. The proper use of medication is everyone's business.
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