Multimillion-Dollar Settlement For Brain Damage Caused By Nursing Negligence
Multimillion-dollar recovery for the mother of two young children who suffered significant brain damage because the nurses in the emergency room did not monitor her after she received the painkilling drug Dilaudid. The patient had entered a local Pittsburgh emergency room with a minor arm injury and received Dilaudid in order to dull the pain. Dilaudid has a tendency to suppress a person's respiration and, therefore, after giving the drug the nursing staff has to closely watch the patient to make sure that his or her breathing remains normal. Unfortunately, in this case, that did not happen. The patient was left unattended for nearly an hour and when the nurse returned, the young lady had stopped breathing and her heart had stopped pumping oxygen to her brain. As a result, she suffered serious and permanent brain damage.
Most medications have potential side effects, some more serious than others. The doctors and nurses who administer these drugs must be familiar with those side effects. Before our case occurred, there had been several incidents nationally with the drug Dilaudid and, therefore, the nursing staff should have been well aware of its potential side effects, and they should have been watching this patient much more closely. As a result of incidents such as this, many hospitals have restricted the use of Dilaudid in the emergency room.
Although this young woman was not employed, she was the mother of two school-aged children and, therefore, the major item of damage in this case was the children's loss of parental guidance, supervision and upbringing. The settlement monies were used to establish trust funds for the benefit of the children throughout the rest of their lives. The money is no substitute, but in this case it will provide the financial means for their grandmother to look after them until they finish school.