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North Adams Medical Malpractice Law Blog

Lawsuit: Surgeon leaves OR early and patient suffers brain injury

During surgical procedures in Massachusetts or anywhere else, unexpected events can and do occasionally happen. This is only one reason among many why it's so important to have highly trained and experienced surgeons present. They can react if a serious issue arises, so that the problem can be addressed quickly, before permanent damage -- such as a brain injury -- occurs. In another state, a family has filed a lawsuit against a surgeon alleging just such an event.

After undergoing open-heart surgery, a 76-year-old patient has been left permanently comatose. The lawsuit alleges that the man's vegetative state was due to his excessive bleeding after surgery. The patient's brain was starved of oxygen due to blood loss when, according to reports, the surgeon left the operating room – and, in fact, the hospital grounds -- before the man was in stable condition.

Medical negligence suit filed after surgical tool left in patient

While it happened on the other side of the country, a recent surgical error may have many people in Massachusetts thinking twice before they schedule their next operation. A woman has filed a medical negligence lawsuit against a doctor and hospital. It is claimed that the physician left a surgical tool inside her body after an operation.

In April 2017, the plaintiff says she went to the hospital for an operation to remove a benign abdominal tumor. Initially, the surgery was believed to have been a success, and the patient was discharged from the hospital. However, when she began experiencing severe kidney, abdominal and back pain, she sought medical help at an emergency room at a different medical center less than two weeks later.

DON'T WAIT UNTIL IT'S TOO LATE TO EXECUTE A POWER OF ATTORNEY

A durable power of attorney is an extremely important estate planning tool. If you become incapacitated due to dementia or some other reason, this crucial document allows the person you appoint (your "attorney-in-fact" or "agent") to act in place of you (the "principal") for financial purposes. The agent under the power of attorney can quickly step in and take care of your affairs. The "durable" aspect of a power of attorney allows the document to remain valid after your incapacity.

Lawsuit claims mother, baby injured during birth from negligence

The birth of a child is supposed to be one of the most joyous occasions in many new Massachusetts parents' lives. Alarmingly, a growing concern around the country is the high incidence of serious injury to expectant mothers during labor and delivery. Of course, the number one concern of most parents is that their infant is not injured during birth, but prioritizing the health of the mother should not be far behind on the list of concerns for attendant health care providers.

Unfortunately for one woman in another state, the medical staff attending her delivery seems to have instead prioritized their own productivity over the needs of the mother and child, according to the woman's recently filed lawsuit. The complaint alleges that a group of doctors took insufficient measures to prevent her injuries and administered too much of a drug. The plaintiff filed the legal complaint both on behalf of herself and that of her infant.

Failure to diagnose kidney mass likely resulted in boy's death

The loss of a child is the worst fear for many Massachusetts parents, who will likely feel sympathy for the plaintiffs in a recently settled wrongful death lawsuit filed in another state. The plaintiffs in the case lost their son in 2014 due to an apparent failure to diagnose a large malignant mass on their teenager's kidney. Sadly, this failure to correctly interpret ultrasound results is blamed for causing the boy's death.

At the age of seven, the boy was discovered to have a calcified cyst on his kidney. Though benign at the time, his condition required ongoing yearly checkups. When, in May 2014, the young man discovered blood in his urine, his mother brought him to the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center to have his kidneys evaluated.

Negligence during birth often has lifelong negative consequences

Babies are at their most vulnerable as newborns, which is why expectant parents rely on the care of highly trained doctors and obstetricians during pregnancy, labor and delivery. Newborns have their whole lives ahead of them, and when something goes wrong, it can have a permanent detrimental effect on their future. It's no wonder, then, that Massachusetts parents become so protective and upset in cases involving physician negligence during birth; a careless mistake or thoughtless oversight can have devastating lifelong consequences for children.

In another state, a mother and her baby have recently filed a lawsuit over just such birth injuries. The complaint alleges malpractice and negligence by the doctor who delivered the baby. The physician was employed by the Department of Health and Human Services at the time of the newborn's delivery; as such, the lawsuit names as defendant the United States of America.

Allegedly failed surgery leads woman to claim medical malpractice

In the hands of conscientious, skilled Massachusetts physicians, surgery can be life-saving. Unfortunately, it can also be life-changing, and not always for the better, particularly if the surgeon is not careful or well-trained. In another state, a woman has filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against a medical facility and the physician there after an allegedly botched operation has left her suffering the consequences.

According to reports, in Nov. 2015, the plaintiff underwent a hysterectomy at Kingwood Medical Center. Unbeknownst to the patient, the surgeon in charge of the procedure had apparently only given the operation a 50 percent chance of success and noted as much in his notes. However, the patient alleges that she was never informed of this low likelihood of a positive outcome, complaining that the physician in charge failed to convey this information.

Lawsuit: Failure to diagnose boy's infection led to brain injury

Massachusetts health professionals attend years of schooling to ensure they are able to make prompt, accurate diagnoses and get patients the treatment they need. That is what they are paid for, after all, as a delay in accurately diagnosing an illness often means irreversible damage. In another state, for example, a group of doctors' failure to diagnose a child's illness tragically resulted in permanent brain damage.

According to the lawsuit filed by the boy's mother, a 5-year-old lost brain function after a severe sinus infection spread to his brain when doctors failed to diagnose and treat it. The complaint claims that the doctors on staff at Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical Center were distracted by the fact that the child had recently suffered a bump on his head in a fall. They repeatedly sent him home with instructions to dose him with pain medication.

THE LIFE ESTATE: A USEFUL TOOL IN THE RIGHT CIRCUMSTANCES

The term "life estate" often comes up in discussions of estate and Medicaid planning. Life estates can be used to avoid probate and to give a house to children while retaining the ability to live there. Life estates also can play an important role in Medicaid planning. But what, exactly, does the term mean and how are life estates used?

Lawsuit alleges birth injuries due to doctor's failure to screen

For many in Massachusetts, becoming a parent is likely the happiest day of their lives, especially for any who struggle with fertility. It's all the more upsetting to imagine, then, going through the time, emotional investment and financial costs for treatments at a fertility clinic, only to have your beloved child suffer from birth injuries due to a doctor's negligence. Yet just such an incident has apparently occurred in another state, where two couples have filed a medical malpractice lawsuit after their infants were born with genetic abnormalities.

According to the reports, the two babies in question were born with a genetic condition known as Fragile X. This syndrome has symptoms that can include a variety of developmental delays and intellectual impairments. Only after the children were born with the condition was it traced back to the donated eggs used by the clinic, when, per the court papers, it was later discovered that the donors were carriers of the mutation.

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