The Simple Question: Are you Allergic to any Medications?

Monty Oum, the creator of the animated web series "RWBY" and director of animation for Rooster Teeth Productions, a company best known for repurposing the avatars in the Halo video games into characters in the popular web series "Red vs. Blue," died on February, 1, 2015, ten days after experiencing a severe allergic reaction during a medical procedure.

Although none of the reports on Monty Oum's death make mention of the actual procedure that was being performed, or the medications administered to him, anyone who has ever undergone any medical procedure or treatment, even the most basic, knows that one of the first questions presented to a patient is: Are you allergic to any medications? It is also a basic question on any patient intake form. One cannot help but wonder - was Monty Oum asked this question?

Though a simple question, it carries heavy weight. An allergic reaction can cause an outbreak of hives or it can be the cause of an anaphylactic reaction that leads to sudden death. It is essential that a treating physician knows of any allergies, or even suspected ones, that might affect the patient. This knowledge can ensure that the physician is prepared with alternative treatment or remedies in situations when a reaction occurs.

Physicians must be mindful of their patient's medical history when considering a course of treatment. In situations where they fail to take such history into account, they will certainly bear the burden of being exposed to a strong medical malpractice claim or even disciplinary action.