Daughter receives largest malpractice award in state this year

With the recent publication of statistics indicating that medical errors are the third leading cause of death in the United States, concerns about becoming victims of malpractice are logical among Pennsylvania residents. Such errors can take many forms and involve medications, surgeries and more. The failure to diagnose cancer when evident in early stages is another all-too common cause of injury or death to patients.

The life of a Boston woman was cut short unnecessarily according to a Massachusetts jury who found a radiologist guilty in a recent medical malpractice lawsuit surrounding the woman’s August 2008 death from lung cancer and the related spread of disease that occurred due to the failure to diagnose it when care was initially sought. Reports indicate that the defense will pursue a new trial in the case.

The now-deceased woman first sought medical treatment for what was later found to be lung cancer in October of 2006. The negligent physician misread the woman’s chest x-ray as normal, allowing her to be sent home with a supposed respiratory infection. In November of 2007, she once again went to the doctor for help for her then worsened condition. It was then that the lung cancer mass was properly identified. By the next spring, the misdiagnosed cancer affected other organs and bones. The jury’s $16.7 million award represents the biggest malpractice judgment in the state this year and among the biggest in recent years.

When the people tasked with saving lives fail to detect cancer or other serious illnesses, patients deserve help and compensation. Scheduling a consultation with a malpractice lawyer can educate victims and their family members about the options for this.

Source: The Boston Globe, “$16.7 million award in cancer lawsuit ,” Yasmeen Abutaleb, June 30, 2014