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Georgia Man Given Chemotherapy Drug Instead of Prescribed Diuretic

December 1st, 2009

An error on the part of a pharmacy in Atlanta nearly led to the death of an 81-year old man. The man, Glenn Wehunt, was prescribed Metolazone, a diuretic, to reduce swelling in his legs. Instead, the pharmacy gave him Methotrexate, a powerful chemotherapy drug used to treat cancer. To make matters worse, the instructions—meant for the diuretic—had him taking massive overdoses of the medication, resulting in Mr. Wehunt taking two month’s worth of the chemotherapy drug in just eight days.

The mistake wasn’t discovered until the patient was taken to the emergency room following complications caused by the medication. In the six months since his emergency room visit, Mr. Wehunt has almost died three times. He has also lost most of his hair, requires assistance just to stand up and must now use a walker to get around.

An estimated 7,000 Americans die each year from prescription error. Many of these cases involve human error. Pharmacists misread doctors’ handwriting, carelessly (as in this case) dispense a similarly named drug or mistakenly give patients prescriptions mean for someone else. Busy pharmacists often fill hundreds of prescriptions per shift, and suffer from exhaustion which leads to mistakes.

A pharmacist should examine each prescription prior to dispensing it to the patient and then discuss the instructions, interactions and other pertinent information with the patient.

Prescription medications are heavily regulated, and for good reason. Medications must be administered with the utmost of care. Even seemingly minor medical or pharmaceutical errors can pose grave consequences to patients and their loved ones. Nevertheless, accidents occur all too often.

The attorneys at have a long record of successfully representing victims of medical and pharmaceutical error. If you, or someone you know, have been injured because of being prescribed the wrong medicine, or other medical error, please contact us at for a free consultation. Our attorneys are available to assist in all aspects of your litigation.

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Gavin P. Lentz, Esq.
Bochetto & Lentz

Gavin Lentz (right) was selected as a "Super Lawyer" for 2006-2009 and 2010-2015 in New Jersey by Philadelphia Magazine. He has also been selected as a "Super Lawyer" by Philadelphia Magazine and the Legal Intelligencer in 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011 - 2015.

On September 16, 2002 Mr. Lentz was selected as one of the top 50 lawyers in Pennsylvania by the Legal Intelligencer.

He has made many television appearances, including on Fox News, The Today Show, Inside Edition, and The Phil Donahue Show.

Mr. Lentz is a member of the American Trial Lawyers Association and the Million Dollar Advocates Forum.

As a former prosecutor, he knows how to aggressively go after large pharmacy chains to prove the facts necessary to protect your loved one's rights.

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