The FDA announced this week that it is investigating the deaths of two patients who died several days after receiving intramuscular injections of the long-acting antipsychotic drug Zyprexa Relprevv (olanzapine pamoate). According to the investigation, both patients received appropriate doses of the drug, and both were found to have "very high olanzapine blood levels after death." High doses of olanzapine can cause delirium, cardiopulmonary arrest, cardiac arrhythmias, and impaired levels of consciousness ranging from sedation to coma. The FDA has not yet determined if the drug is the cause of the fatalities. Zyprexa Relprevv is used for treating patients with schizophrenia.
There is a great article in the New Haven Register this morning about a Cheshire teenager who saved the life of one his neighbors who was cut by a chainsaw after falling from a ladder. Unfortunately, many power tools are still manufactured today without a kill switch designed to shut off the tool if the user loses control of the tool. As a result, the same types of accidents happen over and over despite the fact that there is a readily available, inexpensive, and simple technological solution that can prevent these types of injuries. Frequently, a product can be made vastly safer simply by adding an inexpensive kill switch.