What Are the Known Risks of Prescription Medications?

Prescription medications are often meant to heal and minimize symptoms of ailments. In most cases, that is what they do, and may even help save a life. Yet, there are many situations in which these medications fail to protect and may even cause harm. Understanding the known risks of prescription medications is critical to protecting yourself. Talk to a medication prescription error attorney in Portland at Paulson Coletti Trial Attorneys PC today.

Do You Know the Risks of Your Medications?

Most of the time, medications have a long list of side effects and warnings associated with them. You and your doctor should always consider what those risks are and then determine if the risks of those medications can actually be worth the benefits it provides. There is no reason not to trust your doctor in this area, but you should be protected and educated as well.

When you think about dangerous drugs, look beyond just the illicit drugs people use. Take a look at what is in your medicine cabinet to determine what risks your medications present. If you have not done so, request that the pharmacy provide you with a list of the warnings and risks associated with any prescriptions you have. Read the packaging materials as well.

All of this information is meant to help you know what risks you could face if you use that product. However, there are many situations where the dangers are not fully understood, and that can create a very dangerous situation for those using those products. If you find yourself suffering from complex conditions and side effects that are not on the list of side effects, it may be time to seek out additional help from a skilled medical malpractice attorney in Portland.

Common Dangers of Some Prescription Drugs

Take a look at some of the most common prescription and over-the-counter medications that people use that carry risks that could harm your health. Do not stop taking your medications if a doctor prescribes them to you, but make sure to bring up these risks with your doctor right away.


Often referred to as benzos, benzodiazepines are highly effective drugs at helping to control anxiety and other health complications. However, these drugs carry a high risk of addiction and dependency. In addition to this, they can cause a risk of fatal respiratory depression, meaning that your breathing slows down so much that you are not getting enough oxygen to your brain. A slowed heart rate and eventual overdose are also risks of these drugs.


Pain medications are often necessary to turn off the signal of intense pain traveling to the brain. They are often critical in maintaining well-being after surgeries or serious injuries. Yet, opioids cause numerous risks as well, including a very high risk of addiction and dependence.

They also have other risks, including dropping your breathing rate and heartbeat to very dangerous levels. This can also lead to brain damage if it lasts too long. Other people may suffer from coma.


Cortisone is a drug used to treat injuries and to reduce inflammation. While it may be used in these ways effectively, there are risks to using it over time. Some people may experience intense nausea and vomiting. Others suffer from high blood pressure and muscle weakness. Some may suffer from fragile skin that causes painful sores. Others may also suffer from slower wound healing and, in some situations, intestinal bleeding.

Blood Thinners

Though many people need to use blood thinners because of the risks associated with irregular heartbeats, it is possible for blood thinners to cause numerous health problems for individuals. They can, for example, make it easier to bleed significantly, which could mean losing too much blood. They also make a person more susceptible to GI bleeds. They may also fail if a person consumes the wrong types of food, leading to a higher risk of blood clots and strokes.

Cholesterol-Lowering Drugs

There are numerous medications used today to help reduce cholesterol build up in the bloodstream, and they work in various ways. Many of these medications seem to be safe to use, but there are some potential complications that can occur in those who take them. For example, they may reduce good cholesterol numbers too much, which can lead to health complications. They may cause a person to be at higher risk of strokes.


Stimulants are designed to promote the function of the brain, which in turn helps to stimulate the function of the heart and breathing rate. Stimulants are often used for a variety of conditions, including the treatment of ADHD. In some cases, these medications are safe to use, but even in situations where they are, they need careful monitoring.

It is possible to develop an addiction to them. In addition to this, a person may become tolerant of the drug, which may lead to increased use and fatal heart attacks as a result. Substance use disorders are one of the biggest concerns here.


Methadone is a type of pain medication that provides longer-lasting control over symptoms, and as a result, it is often prescribed. However, there are many risks to taking this drug, as it is an opioid that can cause substance use disorder. Some people may also suffer from an overdose or use too much, which can lead to a depressed heart rate and breathing rate.


For many people, antidepressants are a critical tool in helping to regulate brain chemicals and hormones. They are used for mood disorders, depression, and anxiety disorders in many people. In some situations, taking these drugs can cause side effects, including weight gain, blood clots, and insomnia. Some people may also suffer from an increased risk of internal bleeding.

If you are experiencing side effects from the medications you are taking, be sure to reach out to your doctor to discuss them as soon as possible. Yet, if you find that these symptoms are different from what you were warned about, that could be a product liability claim that you should speak to an attorney about to protect your right to compensation.