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Miami Medical Malpractice Law Blog

Malpractice claim: Failure to diagnose led to unnecessary surgery

Patients depend on an accurate diagnosis before proceeding with medical treatment options. If there is a failure to diagnose, whether in terms of accuracy or timeliness, this can lead to a delay in necessary treatment or even the use of treatments that weren't really required. Unfortunately, many patients in Florida and elsewhere have been negatively affected due to diagnosing errors.

In another state, a woman filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against her grandmother's physician, claiming a failure to accurately diagnose terminal cancer led to an unnecessary surgery. The 31-year-old woman underwent surgery as an organ donor for her grandmother, who was told she needed a kidney transplant. According to the complaint, approximately one month before surgery, abnormalities were seen on a CAT scan that may have been consistent with a type a cancer. Despite this finding, the transplant surgery was performed as scheduled. Less than one year later, the grandmother passed away from a terminal form of cancer.

Maternity care may lead to medical malpractice claims in Florida

Seeking quality care is important to Florida women who are pregnant and trying to decide where to deliver their impending bundle of joy. Unfortunately, a new study suggests that there is a vast disparity regarding care offered at different hospitals and birthing centers. Statistics regarding care and complications are not readily available to the public. Not having this information leaves women in the dark when making this important decision, which could lead to a higher rate of medical malpractice incidents.

A recent study was released that compares hospitals on a nationwide scale. It was found that woman who delivered their babies at lower performing medical facilities were at a greater risk of experiencing major complications. In fact, the rate is said to be more than twice as high for vaginal births and even higher for births via C-section.

Medical malpractice claims against VA bring complaints from Vets

Complaints against Veterans Affairs medical facilities have been in national headlines for several months now. Accusations of medical malpractice have surfaced and along with it, complaints from veterans about being denied care they rightfully earned. Numerous veterans in Florida are among those criticizing the system that is supposed to be looking out for them.

While not all veterans hate the system, many do have good things to say when they do finally receive care, but several veterans claim getting to that point of receiving care can take years. These years spent waiting for care often result in declining health that could greatly benefit from prompt treatment. Others claim that care is being denied because they have too many other resources at their disposal or their medical problem was service related. Because of negative experiences with VA facilities, some veterans say they are giving up on these services.

Surgical error cited in recent medical malpractice case

No matter how you look at it, surgery can be scary. Having to worry about how the body will react to anesthesia, pain medications and the healing process is generally enough of a concern. The last thing anyone wants to consider happening is their doctor making a surgical error. Unfortunately, errors are documented yearly both locally in Florida and on a national level. After if is discovered that a mistake has occurred, the question then turns to why and how it happened.

In another state, a man has filed a lawsuit against several doctors, a hospital and a few clinics, claiming a surgical error was made. The patient alleges he was initially scheduled to have a circumcision performed but woke in post-operative care to find his penis had been amputated. The patient asserts he never gave consent for any form of amputation of this body part, and was not made aware of any complications of the scheduled procedure that would require an amputation.

Alleged failure to diagnose leads to medical malpractice case

A woman in another jurisdiction has filed a medical malpractice claim against several doctors and facilities for alleged negligence that reportedly led to the spread of cancer. The lawsuit claims that a failure to diagnose a cancerous tumor, on several occasions and by multiple doctors, eventually led to the cancer spreading to her lungs, causing further pain, suffering and the need for extensive medical treatments. Though this case has been filed outside of Florida, the situation may sadly sound familiar to some local patients.

A woman, whose name and age weren't identified, recently filed a lawsuit against two physicians and two orthopedic treatment facilities, claiming they failed to properly diagnose and treat a tumor in her leg. The claim alleges that an X-ray showed an abnormality on the leg, which required an MRI for further investigation. An MRI was completed, though supposedly on the wrong leg, and showed nothing wrong. Diagnosis and treatment options were allegedly provided based on the MRI findings.

Hospital infection victims may claim medical malpractice

Doctors and medical staff undergo years of training before they start working, and ongoing training to stay up to par on medical techniques and safety protocols. Because of this, patients and their families put trust in the medical system, believing all necessary precautions are taken to ensure positive outcomes. Unfortunately, infections spreading to patients within hospitals are still a very real concern, not only in Florida but across the country. Victims of these infections, or the surviving family of fatal victims, may be entitled to file medical malpractice claims against those believed to be responsible for the infection.

In another jurisdiction, two families are questioning the actions of the hospital that they say is responsible for passing along an infection that ultimately claimed the lives of their loved ones. A 76-year-old male and a 59-year-old female underwent heart surgery at the hospital in question, and both ended up with bacterial infections in their chest. Both suffered severe side effects, including, but not limited to fever, chest pains and failure for surgical wounds to close. Each victim endured several rounds of different treatment options before it was discovered that the issue was related to an infection and at that point treatments failed. Sadly, both patients died, and their families are questioning the hospital's liability in the deaths.

Possible weekend effect could lead to medical malpractice claims

A recent study published by Johns Hopkins University has looked at the risks associated with surgeries and care received on the weekends as opposed to the same services offered on weekdays. The study simply questioned if services offered on weekends were up to par. Results of this 'weekend effect' study may give way to patients questioning care received, and could lead to medical malpractice cases against medical providers across the country, including some in Florida.

According to the study, surgeries performed on weekends, particularly those involving children, were more likely to result in injury or death to the patient. While deaths from relatively simple emergency procedures are considered a rare event, data shows a slight increase in complications or death from weekend surgeries. To many, this is certainly a cause for concern and something that requires more in-depth study.

Infections from medical care lead to medical malpractice claims

Even though medical facilities across the country, including those in Florida, are frequently updating policies to improve patient safety and treatment practices, infections related to healthcare received are still a problem. These infections may cause severe physical trauma or even death to those infected. In cases where infections result from care received in a medical facility, medical malpractice claims quite often follow.

According to the Center for Disease Control, approximately 20 people a day get infections from the medical care they receive. It is reported that about 100,000 people die each year from these infections, though the Journal of Patient Safety believes that number is much higher, closer to 400,000 people. These numbers are certainly cause for concern.

Hypertension and snoring raise risk for apnea in pregnant women

Sleep apnea affects a large part of the population, including residents in Florida; many of whom don't even know they have it. Pregnant women with certain factors, including a combination of hypertension and snoring, are considered to be at an increased risk for developing obstructive sleep apnea. In other words, they have a higher possibility of their airways closing off while sleeping, which can lower oxygen levels and disrupt sleep patterns.

While sleep medicine is still considered to be a relatively new science, there have been great strides taken in determining the effects of poor sleep and sleep apnea on pregnant women and their unborn children. Snoring, in itself, has been linked to higher rates of C-sections and low birth weight babies. According to recent data, women with hypertension are more likely to snore, and those with both factors double their chance of developing sleep apnea, compared to those who only snore.

Outpatient injuries could lead to medical malpractice claims

Many elderly patients, in Florida and across the nation, are allegedly victims of medical injuries occurring in an outpatient setting. While the severity of these injuries varies, they are believed to be caused by the care received, as opposed to complications from any underlying medical problems. If care given is indeed found to be the primary cause of these injuries, medical malpractice claims may be made against the provider believed to be responsible.

It has been reported that approximately one in five Medicare patients fall victim to medical injuries, and about two-thirds of those occurred in an outpatient setting. In a recent study, including data collected from over 12,000 Medicare patients between the years of 1998 and 2005, about 19 percent of those reported having experienced a medical injury. Risk of injury increased with age and disability status.