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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.

There, ultrasound results of his left kidney were read — apparently mistakenly — as stable and unchanged, and the hospital discharged the teen. Tragically, later that spring, the boy died, and the autopsy found the cause of death to be a large mass on his left kidney, part of which had broken off. However, this mass was not reported in the medical records from his previous emergency room visit.

Had DHMC staff correctly read and interpreted the test results, the lawsuit alleged, the young man could have been given proper medical treatment, even surgery, that could ultimately have saved his life. Before the case went to trial, however, reports indicate that the medical center decide to settle for $2 million. Of course, no amount of money could ever make up for the loss of a child, but the parents may have some sense of solace in successfully fighting for justice and accountability on behalf of their son. Anyone in Massachusetts who has suffered due to a physician’s failure to diagnose a serious medical condition or has been injured due to any other type of doctor error may wish to explore their own options for justice and compensation with an experienced medical malpractice attorney.

Source: vnews.com, “Probate Records Indicate DHMC Settled Wrongful Death Case for $2 Million“, Jordan Cuddemi, Dec. 20, 2017