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November 2013 Archives

Widower seeks $300,000 in wrongful death lawsuit

No one deserves to get cancer; but everyone deserves a chance to fight the deadly disease when it invades their body. Unfortunately, not everyone gets that opportunity. While the exact survival statistics vary greatly based on what type of cancer a person has, one thing is constant: the sooner cancer is diagnosed, the better the chances of survival. A doctor’s delayed diagnosis or failure to diagnose cancer is essentially a death sentence.

Driver didn't think she would hit pedestrian while turning

When something happens while driving, many people instinctively make an excuse. When a driver hits a motorcyclist, he or she may say "I didn't see him!" When one driver turns left in front of another driver going straight, he or she may say, "I thought I could make the turn!" The excuses are normal, but that doesn't mean that they are acceptable. Drivers can give all the excuses they want, but when their negligence causes an accident, they can be held responsible.

Failure to medicate and other deadly medication errors common

Most of the news stories about medication errors are focused on patients receiving too much of a particular prescription drug. This frequently occurs in hospitals, nursing homes and pharmacies. In some cases, however, not receiving a medication as prescribed can cause permanent disabilities or possibly even death. Our readers in Pittsburgh may be surprised to learn just how common such medication errors are.

Landmark Dram Shop Verdict in Allegheny County

An Allegheny County jury this afternoon returned one of the largest civil verdicts in the history of Allegheny County in a case involving a drunk driver who was served alcohol at a local Elks club. The award of more than $28 million against the Elks Club Lodge No. 11 of Pittsburgh will grow to more than $30 million with interest.

4 injured, 3 killed in wrong-way accident in Mercer County

It is an absolute tragedy when someone is killed in a car accident, especially if the accident could have been prevented. Fatal car accidents affect more than just the person who was killed, but his or her family, friends and the community, too. Perhaps this is one of the reasons why family members choose to file wrongful death lawsuits after the loss of a loved one. When it is clear that someone else's negligence has caused a death, that person (or his or her estate) can be held responsible for the fatal crash.

Number of adverse events linked to robotic surgeries on the rise

Robotic surgery is often touted as a better alternative to traditional surgery, giving doctors greater visibility and precision which translates to smaller incisions and less pain and discomfort for patients. Unfortunately, that is not always the case. Surgical errors still occur when a physician uses a robotic devise to perform various procedures.

Birth injury lawsuit settled, family awarded $7.5 million

It is reasonable to expect that when you go to the hospital in Pittsburgh or anywhere else seeking medical help, you will get the attention that you need. Yet, that is not always the case. Medical professionals are often rushed or simply don’t comprehend the severity of a situation and discharge a patient without a proper diagnosis.

Study reveals effect of sleep deprivation on surgeons

Over the years, there has been a lot of research done on the effects of sleep deprivation. It has been shown to slow down reflexes, impair judgment and cause a person to be more forgetful. The question regarding sleep deprivation that researchers set out to answer this time around: “Are surgeons more likely to make surgical errors when they don’t get a full night’s rest?”

Better communication can prevent potential misdiagnosis

The five conditions that are most frequently misdiagnosed or diagnosed late are cancer, heart failure, pneumonia, kidney failure and UTIs. Even the best doctors in Pittsburgh are sometimes guilty of misdiagnosed cancer or a delay in diagnosis that leads to a worsened condition. While the burden of obtaining an accurate diagnosis should not rest on the patient, enhancing doctor-patient communication can prevent such problems.

Erb’s palsy more common than Down syndrome

Just as every woman in Pittsburgh experiences pregnancy differently, each will have different delivery experiences. Even an easy pregnancy can turn into a difficult delivery. The size and position of the baby can make labor and delivery more complicated for the mother-to-be as well as the delivery doctors and nurses, and can sometimes lead to birth injuries. For instance, excessive pulling during a head first delivery or pressure put on the infant’s arms during a feet first delivery can cause injuries to the nerves that control the shoulder, arm, hand and spine—injuries known as Erb’s palsy.

Doctor failed to diagnose fatal illnesses, lied on applications

It seems like a safe assumption that if a doctor has passed the MCAT, completed both medical school and residencies and met the other licensing requirements that he or she is qualified to care for patients. Sadly, that is not always the case and patients may receive substandard care in Pittsburgh, PA or any other state in the U.S.

Worldwide study aims to diagnose brain injuries more accurately

Every brain injury is unique, making it difficult to diagnose accurately. Some symptoms appear immediately after the injury, but others aren’t noticeable for days or even weeks. Medical professionals participating in an international study are trying to find better ways to assess brain trauma and classify all of its variations.

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