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Medical Malpractice Fatalities

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Medical Malpractice Fatalities

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Learn what medical malpractice is and fatal examples of medical malpractice which have changed lives forever. These include surgical errors, overdoses and misdiagnosed conditions which could have been easily avoided. Whether birth injuries or wrongful death, the results of medical malpractice can be deadly

Learn what medical malpractice is and fatal examples of medical malpractice which have changed lives forever. These include surgical errors, overdoses and misdiagnosed conditions which could have been easily avoided. Whether birth injuries or wrongful death, the results of medical malpractice can be deadly

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Medical Malpractice Fatalities

  1. 1. When Medical Malpractice Is Fatal A Look At Why Malpractice Occurs, and What You Can Do About It www.wnwlaw.com
  2. 2. The Consequences of A Doctor’s Mistakes It comes as no surprise that doctors make mistakes. We all do. However, when medical professionals get things wrong, the consequences can be especially dire. A surprising number of deaths are caused by medical errors every year. In the following pages, we’ll look at why these fatalities occur and what it means for victims of medical malpractice.
  3. 3. What is Medical Malpractice? Medical malpractice occurs due to a physician or health care provider’s negligence. Negligence is defined as the failure to follow the required standard of care. As you will see, this can include incompetence, negligence or general disregard for the well- being of patients. It is the responsibility of doctors and medical professionals to provide care to the best of their abilities and to do no harm to their patients.
  4. 4. Examples of Medical Malpractice • Undiagnosed or misdiagnosed conditions and diseases • Medication overdoses and prescription error • Surgical errors • Infection or illness caused by unsanitary equipment • Failing to advise patients about behaviors that could worsen their condition.
  5. 5. Medical Malpractice Is A Major Problem Patient safety experts at Johns Hopkins analyzed data over an eight-year period and determined that more than 250,000 deaths each year in the U.S. are due to medical error. That makes medical error the third highest cause of death in the United States.
  6. 6. Common Causes of Medical Malpractice • Distraction • Fatigue • Lack of Education and Experience • Inadequate Attention Given to Individual Patients • Inaccurate Medical Records
  7. 7. Emergency Room Negligence Some of the most serious and urgent injuries and illnesses are treated in emergency rooms. Unfortunately, many hospitals have emergency departments that are understaffed and ill prepared to handle the high volume of patients that come through their doors. Some of the most common emergency room errors include: • Failure to diagnosis • Failure to provide prompt treatment • Failure to assess patient charts • Failure to detect complications • Medication errors • Improper monitoring of patients
  8. 8. Surgical Errors Up to 4,000 surgical errors occur every single year in the United States. Over half of these errors lead to permanent damage in patients, while approximately 16 percent result in fatalities. Surgical errors include: • Infection • Surgical Mix-Ups (Wrong site, wrong patient, wrong procedure) • Improper administration of medications or anesthesia • Causing damage to organs or nerves because of misuse or mishandling of surgical implements • Failure to remove all surgical items from patients
  9. 9. Failure to Diagnose Cancer When a doctor fails to identify the presence of cancer in a patient, the results can be disastrous. These failures often stem from negligence on the part of a medical professional. Errors include: • Failure to investigate suspicious skin growths • Failure to order a mammogram for patients with suspicious lumps • Failure to detect elevated PSA • Failure to properly interpret imaging studies of a cancerous mass • Failure to interpret tissue samples that indicate cancerous cells
  10. 10. Birth Injuries Perhaps the most tragic of all malpractice cases are those that resulted in fatal birth injuries. Birth injuries can be caused by: • Oxygen deprivation during labor and delivery • Prescription drugs (such as SSRIs) taken by the mother before or during pregnancy • Failure to use proper delivery techniques • Failure to perform a C-section in a timely manner • Improper use of delivery instruments (such as forceps and vacuum)
  11. 11. Wrongful Death in Medical Malpractice If a doctor fails to give proper medical care and their negligence causes the death of a patient, surviving family members can file what is known as a wrongful death claim. These claims help grieving survivors recover losses stemming from outstanding medical bills, funeral costs, loss of income and other end-of-life costs.
  12. 12. We Can Help If you have lost a loved one or they have been injured due to a doctor’s negligence, the Philadelphia medical malpractice attorneys at Wapner, Newman, Wigrizer, Brecher & Miller can help. Contact us today to learn more about filing a wrongful death claim. www.wnwlaw.com
  13. 13. How We’ve Helped Our Clients Marc Brecher represented the estate of a 51-year-old man who presented to a hospital within 45 minutes of the onset of severe chest pain. The emergency room doctor promptly diagnosed that he was having a heart attack and paged the on-call cardiologist. However the on-call cardiologist did not timely respond to the page. The emergency room doctor then decided to give the patient a clot-busting drug, without consulting with the on-call cardiologist. The clot-busting drug caused a massive intracranial hemorrhage, which led to an irreversible coma and resultant death. It turns out that patients with heart attacks should not get a clot-busting drug if they present with very high blood pressure, which was present in this case. Brecher produced experts in the fields of cardiology, emergency room medicine and neurology to support this claim and obtain this substantial settlement.
  14. 14. Settlement in Deadly Medical Malpractice Case Wrongful death attorney in Philadelphia, Steven Wigrizer, a partner with Wapner, Newman, Wigrizer & Brecher, settled a medical malpractice case involving the death of a 39-year- old mother of five in which the defendants failed to properly diagnose a malignant melanoma. The defendants’ negligence resulted in a three-year delay in diagnosis, thereby allowing the cancer to progress from a curable stage to an incurable one.

Editor's Notes

  • https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/to-your-health/wp/2016/05/03/researchers-medical-errors-now-third-leading-cause-of-death-in-united-states/
  • http://www.wnwlaw.com/medical-malpractice/emergency-room-negligence/
  • http://www.wnwlaw.com/medical-malpractice/surgical-errors/
  • http://www.wnwlaw.com/medical-malpractice/failure-diagnose-cancer/
  • http://www.wnwlaw.com/birth-injury/
  • http://www.wnwlaw.com/wrongful-death/medical-malpractice-fatality/

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