Nursing Home Residents Face Risk of Abuse with a Drug Called Neudexta

Do you have a loved one in a nursing home in the Fort Pierce area? They may be at risk of abuse through medical prescriptions, especially if they suffer from dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.

Over the last few years, medical experts have been calling into question the use of a drug called Neudexta among nursing home residents. According to McKnight’s, Nuedexta – which comes in the form of a small red pill – is the only drug approved to treat uncontrolled laughing and crying due to pseudobulbar affect (PBA). While pseudobulbar affect is a rare condition that occurs in and out of nursing homes, the U.S. government is warning private insurers and loved ones of seniors in nursing homes to look for suspicious prescriptions and usage of this medication. Many officials believe the drug is being misused to control unruly behavior within nursing homes.

A CNN investigation published in October of 2017 found that Nuedexta’s maker, Avanir Pharmaceuticals had been “aggressively targeting frail and elderly nursing home residents for whom the drug may be unnecessary or even unsafe.” Following this investigation, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services issued a memo stating that Nuedexta is only approved to treat pseudobulbar affect and that the law requires that Nuedexta can only be covered by insurance for the purpose of medically-accepted prescriptions.

The CNN report stated that Nuedexta is only approved to treat the disorder known as pseudobulbar affect (PBA), and yet this condition afflicts less than 1% of all Americans and is most commonly associated with people who have multiple sclerosis (MS) or ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.
However, Avanir Pharmaceuticals is bringing in hundreds of millions of dollars a year through the sale of Nuedexta by prescribing the medicine to patients for whom Nuedexta may be unnecessary or even unsafe. Many experts believe that Nuedexta’s financial success is a result of Avanir Pharmaceuticals pushing Nuedexta on nursing home residents suffering from dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. But since Nuedexta is not approved for treating patients with anything except the rare pseudobulbar affect (PBA), the widespread use of Nuedexta on frail nursing home residents is a serious form of abuse. Nuedexta can have serious side effects, including dizziness, confusion, increased chance of falls, and even death. The CNN investigation reported at least 51 deaths caused by Nuedexta. If you suspect that your elderly loved one is being abused through prescriptions of Nuedexta in the Fort Pierce, Florida area, don’t wait to get help from experienced and compassionate elder law attorneys!

The Estate, Trust, and Elder Law Firm is here to fight for justice and explain your case clearly. We serve the treasure coast seniors and those who love them. Call our Fort Pierce office at 772-828-2588 or contact us online today!

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