LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - The two-week-old twins of actor Dennis Quaid were recovering in a Los Angeles hospital on Wednesday after mistakenly being given a massive overdose of a blood thinning drug.
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, one of the United States’ leading hospitals, apologized on Wednesday for what it called the “preventable error” that led to the twins and another unidentified child being given 10,000 units of the anti-coagulant Heparin, instead of the normal 10 units given to babies.
The Quaid twins, Thomas Boone and Zoe Grace, were born via a surrogate mother on November 8.
A publicist for Quaid and his wife Kimberley Buffington said the couple “appreciate everyone’s thoughts and prayers, and hope they can maintain their privacy during this difficult time.”
Quaid, who starred in “The Parent Trap” and “The Rookie”, married Buffington in 2004 after his marriage to actress Meg Ryan broke up.
Dr Michael Langberg, chief medical officer at Cedars-Sinai, said in a statement that the three patients were recovering without any apparent ill effects after being treated with a drug that reverses the effects of Heparin.
According to celebrity Web site TMZ.com, the babies started to “bleed out” on Sunday after being given the overdose of Heparin which had been stored by a technician in the wrong place. Heparin is used to clean out IV tubes and prevent blood clots.
Langberg said the overdose was a result of human error by the hospital staff. Investigations are being conducted by both the hospital and by Los Angeles health authorities.
“This was a preventable error, involving a failure to follow our standard policies and procedures, and there is no excuse for that to occur at Cedars-Sinai. Although it appears at this point that there was no harm to any patient, we take this situation very seriously,” Langberg said.
Reporting by Jill Serjeant, editing by Jackie Frank