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Portland Medical Malpractice Law Blog

Family claims woman's death was due to medical negligence

One family in a nearby state is reeling from the loss of a young family member. Following the woman's death, the family has filed a lawsuit claiming medical negligence. Oregon families may be interested to learn that the lawsuit could result in payment of the patient's funeral and medical expenses.  

The young woman suffered from an autoimmune disease called lupus. According to the lawsuit, the woman was not initially admitted to the hospital for her lupus but for an abscess on her tailbone. Throughout her 18-day stay, her cyst improved, but she suffered other complications related to her lupus.

Removal of wrong prostate results in medical malpractice claim

Impotency is a devastating condition for many men in Oregon. The loss of one's inability to have an active intimate relationship can lead to depression, feelings of inadequacy, loss of masculinity and a severe decline in quality of life. Unfortunately, impotency is a risk associated with prostate removal, but there are few options when faced with cancer. One man filed a medical malpractice claim after finding out that his prostate was removed unnecessarily, leaving him impotent and incontinent.

A retired factory worker was told he had prostate cancer. In April 2017 his prostate was removed, but the procedure caused nerve damage that left the man impotent and incontinent. His life would never again be the same. The man and his wife have shared how the damage robbed the man of his masculinity and how it has destroyed the sexually active lifestyle the couple once shared. The couple was devastated to discover that the surgery that changed their lives was completely unnecessary.

Breast implant complications lead to medical malpractice lawsuit

Breast augmentation surgery is one of the most common types of cosmetic surgeries performed in Oregon and across the country. Nationwide, about 400,000 breast augmentations are performed each year. As with any surgery, there are risks associated with the procedure. Some patients report that they were thoroughly warned about possible complications, but many patients underwent the surgery without being informed about the potential serious risks they were facing. One woman has filed a medical malpractice lawsuit, claiming that a medical provider failed repeatedly to identify complications she was having from breast implants she had received nearly 20 years prior.

A woman who had received breast implants in 1989 was having annual mammograms performed at the same facility from 2008 to 2014. Each year she received a confirmation that her results were normal. In 2015 she went to a different facility for testing, and it was discovered that both of her implants had in fact ruptured. As a result of the ruptures she was experiencing numerous problems, including fibrosis of her pectoral muscle, nerve damage and even a disfigured rib.

Paralyzed man seeking $50 million for failure to diagnose

One of the scariest things imaginable is to suddenly, without warning, become completely paralyzed. To abruptly fine oneself alone and unable to move with no idea what the problem is would be terrifying for anyone young or old, male or female, in Oregon or elsewhere. A man had that very thing happen to him one day a number of months ago, and now he is suing a hospital and two doctors for their failure to diagnose an abscess that led to his paralysis.

Last summer a 43-year-old man went to an emergency room complaining of being in extreme pain due to a very stiff and sore neck. He had elevated blood pressure and heart rate and was HIV positive, yet a complete diagnostic analysis was not done. He was given medication for pain, inflammation and muscle spasms and was released to go home.

Toddler's parents awarded $750,000 in medical malpractice lawsuit

Most Oregon parents would agree that having a sick child is one of the hardest things they have ever dealt with. When children are sick, parents will do whatever it takes to try to make them better. Often that is a highly stressful situation as it can be very difficult to determine what the best course of action is. One mother regrets the decision she made when her toddler became sick. She blames the medical staff who treated the child for her daughter's death, and she recently settled a medical malpractice lawsuit she filed against them.

In 2016 the mother noticed her 14-month-old was sick, so she took her to a federally qualified health center, a clinic that provides care regardless of income or insurance status. The mother informed the staff of the girl's high fever, cough and tiredness. The little girl was seen by a physician's assistant who diagnosed her with croupe. She gave the girl a prescription for steroids and sent her home.

Navy veteran awarded $950,000 in medical malpractice lawsuit

In Oregon and across the country, veterans turn to the Veteran's Administration for their medical needs. Health care is one of the benefits of serving in the military. Most would agree that veterans should have the highest level of health care available, but there seems to be frequent reports of substandard care at VA hospitals nationwide. One Navy veteran recently won a medical malpractice lawsuit against the VA doctor who left him with chronic issues from a surgery he performed while his license was limited in other states.

In Oct. 2015 a surgeon was publicly fined and placed on probation due to incompetence and disruptive behavior. Two months later, in Dec. 2015, the doctor was employed at a VA hospital in another state and was performing surgeries. One of these surgeries was on a 55-year-old Navy veteran who had a blocked artery in his leg. The veteran claims the doctor made mistakes during the surgery, which resulted in him suffering from severe pain and problems with his leg.

Child who had stroke due to medical malpractice gets $14 million

In hospitals across Oregon parents pace anxiously while going through one of the scariest things they will ever endure -- waiting while their children go through surgery. Parents of a little girl in another state had to endure that gut-wrenching wait multiple times after their 12-year-old had to have a heart transplant in 2007 and then an additional surgery to correct a problem in 2013. Their worst fears were realized when complications arose. The little girl, now a grown woman, has just been awarded $14 million in a medical malpractice suit against the doctors who provided her care.

After having a heart transplant, the girl had regular follow-up appointments. It was found at one of these appointments that a stent in her heart had broken. In the middle of an elective procedure to replace the stent doctors failed to have enough stents available and had to alter their treatment. The delay caused the surgery to last four hours -- much longer than normal.

Parents sue after after delivery errors cause brain injuries

It's the most magical time of a woman's life -- the moment when she finally gets to see and hold the child that she has been growing, loving and anticipating for 40 long weeks. For some in Oregon and other states, that moment is tainted with the realization that the baby she has longed for is not the healthy, happy infant she expected. Even more crushing is the discovery that the medical complications the child is crippled with were not developmental flaws but were instead caused by delivery errors. One mother is dealing with these horrible realizations after her healthy son was born with severe brain injuries, allegedly due to delivery errors.

The mother had indicated a desire to pursue a vaginal delivery. During her 20 hour labor she was regularly given Pitocin, a drug that speeds the delivery process but can cause adverse reactions in some babies. While more and more Pitocin was administered, the baby's heart rate fluctuated, sometimes becoming alarmingly low for an extended period of time.

What steps should a medical malpractice victim take?

Most would be shocked to hear that the third leading cause of death in the United States is medical negligence. It is estimated that over 200,000 deaths can be attributed to medical errors. These startling statistics bring to light the fact that doctor mistakes are not as uncommon as most would like to think. There are new victims daily here in Oregon and across the country. Here are some things someone who thinks he or she may be a victim of medical malpractice should do.

Finding a new doctor is imperative. This is not only important for treatment of the original condition, but also for treatment of any new symptoms caused by the first doctor's errors. This doctor should ideally not be a member of the same group or office as the original doctor.

Woman loses leg, gets $1 million in medical malpractice claim

Losing a limb is a life-changing event. Whether that limb is an arm or a leg, the way one has to function to perform everyday tasks is changed. Thankfully, with the help of the advanced prosthetics available in Oregon today, many of its residents are living full, active lives after suffering the loss of a limb. A woman in another state is now adapting to life with a prosthetic leg after her medical malpractice case resulted in a $1 million settlement.

In 2012 a woman went to a hospital due to a problem with her blood pressure medication. While in the emergency room, the doctor placed a catheter in her leg. He made a mistake, however, and placed the line in her artery instead of her vein. This mistake allowed the medication she received to severely damage her leg -- essentially killing it.