Tainted IV fluid proves fatal

Posted By John Coletti || 1-Apr-2011

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is investigating tainted IV nutrition fluid that may have contributed to the deaths of nine patients in Alabama. So far no evidence directly linking the bacteria to the deaths has been found, but the investigation is still young. Some nineteen patients in six hospitals in Alabama were found to have a bacterial infection, specifically Serratia marcescens bacteremia, in their blood. Of those nineteen, nine died.

The contaminated IV nutrition in question, TPN, or total perenteral nutrition, was from one pharmacy, Meds IV. The pharmacy has since recalled all of the compounded IV fluids it produced and has also discontinued production as the CDC investigates. TPN is administered to patients via an IV using a catheter.

The family of one of the patients who died has filed a wrongful death suit against Meds IV. Other lawsuits are sure to follow. For more information on the contaminated IV fluids, see this article. For additional information on the wrongful death suit, see this article.