The Internet gives us access to a wealth of medical information at our fingertips. Yet it can also be a double-edged sword. Many of us have fallen down the rabbit hole of Googling our symptoms: What starts out as a probable cold turns into a likely case of terminal cancer.
Medical devices can cause harm in all sorts of ways: They can damage delicate tissues, cause life-threatening side effects and inflict lasting injuries. They can also introduce deadly infections to patients whose health is already fragile.
It's every patient's nightmare: finding out that you received the wrong medication, dosage, test results, diagnosis or treatment because of a mix-up in medical records. In the 21st century, with medical technology having advanced leaps and bounds from even a few decades ago, patient mix-ups should never happen. Unfortunately, they still do - and with far more frequency than most people realize.
When considering what segment of the population suffers from the most drug overdoses, middle-aged white women aren't the first to come to mind. Yet recent research has shed light on just how serious this often-overlooked problem has become.