Mom Claims Improper Walgreens Medication Label Caused Son’s Death

UPDATED 09/01/11 9:15 a.m.

CHICAGO (CBS) – A 3-year-old boy survived a heart transplant, but had trouble that proved to be deadly with the follow-up medication, and his mother is now suing Walgreens.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Michele Fiore reports, Tatiana Lowe and her son, Albert Dobbins, left the hospital after a successful transplant. Albert was prescribed the medication Tacrolimus afterward.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Michele Fiore reports

At 3:03 a.m. June 20, Albert, of the 1700 block of West Lake Street, was pronounced dead at Stroger Hospital of Cook County, according to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office. An autopsy determined he died of congenital heart disease and the death was ruled natural.

Lowe claims that an employee at Walgreens employee improperly placed a warning on the bottle and verbally advised his mother the medication was to be kept refrigerated.

The lawsuit claims the medicine should have been stored at room temperature.

The wrongful death suit claims Walgreens carelessly and negligently labeled the bottle of medication, improperly verbally directed the boy’s caregivers and failed to verify the manufacturer’s directions.

Walgreens spokesman Jim Cohn said he could not comment on pending lawsuits.

The three-count suit is seeking more than $50,000 plus the cost of legal fees.

© Sun-Times Media Wire Chicago Sun-Times 2011. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

  • Skip

    Oh Jeeez!

    Then what? On her way home from the hospital she stopped for a cup of coffee, spilled it in her lap and then found someone’s finger in her French Fries?

    Of course it’s tragic someone died. But come on. Did the temperature of the medication cause their death? Anyone buying that one?

    What ever lawyer, ( in this case, and as to be expected ) ambulance chaser needs to be disbarred.

    I sincerely hope that when this asinine case gets dismissed with prejudice she’s liable for Walgreen’s legal fees.

    People like this need to get a life. Maybe even an actual job.

  • billyd

    Disgusting. Another reason the health care system in America is so completely effed up. Greedy pig lawyers and their clients.

  • Sympathetic Heart

    She’s got a great case in her favor. She should of asked for $100,000 and demand revisions of labeling of prescriptions. I hope she wins and it helps other victims. Pharmaceutical companies make a fortune and rely on pharmacies to earn profit, especially with lifelong, medicine dependent diseases. The money cannot bring her son back, but it can help her pay for medical bills associated with both his disease and treatment. Praying for her.

    • sympathetic, but not blind

      He had a congenital heart defect-why is that Walgreens fault? There is also nothing in this story that even says that the drug would be bad for the child afer having been refridgerated. Please be sure to excuse yourself from any jury in a wrongful death suit, you have no concept of liability, and because of people like you(that thinks the big, bad corporate world should always pay or is to blame) all insurance rates are just going up out of control.

  • Leroy Goldberg

    Tatiana Lowe and her son with the different last name are BLACK…….of course.

    • Kevonte

      Who the he!! else is going to pull a stunt like this? Of course she’s black. Getting something for nothing is the name of the game in the black communities. It will never change until a law is passed, making people who file frivilous lawsuits liable for the defedants costs as well as the court costs.

  • Transplant Dad

    To answer Skip’s question above – YES, the temperature of the medication probably did lead to the boy’s death. Tacro, also known as prograf, is one of the main anti-rejection medicines that are used to suppress the immune system after transplant. If it is not stored at the proper temperature, it becomes ineffective thus allowing the body to attack the transplanted heart thus leading to his death. So YES, I am buying that one Skip.

    Before making uneducated comments about something, please check the facts. I 100% agree that there are too many frivolous lawsuits in this country but this is not one of those cases. By Walgreens improperly labeling the medicine it puts them partially, not fully, responsible.

    BTW, I’m white and have a daughter that received a heart transplant as an infant.

  • Black guy

    If it was you a white person would suing be justified? just asking…

    • Transplant Dad

      Race has nothing to do with it. I simply made the commen of me being white t because of the ignorant people that posted before me.

      To answer your question, it would be justified whether they were white, black, yellow, or green. I don’t think Walgreens is 100% at fault because as a transplant parent, you have to be somewhat accountable for your child’s care. Having said that, Walgreen’s does bear some of the responsibility for mis-labeling the tacro that caused it to be ineffective.

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