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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.

Once admitted to the hospital, she fell under the care of a different doctor. The nursing staff noticed the woman's leg was showing signs of problems, including coldness and loss of pulse, so they contacted the doctor to report their findings. The doctor ordered testing but didn't arrive at the hospital to examine the unconscious patient for seven hours. Once the misplaced catheter was discovered, the doctor ordered all medications being administered through it to stop, but by this time the damage was so severe that he said the leg could not be saved. The woman's leg was amputated at the knee.

The woman filed a medical malpractice claim against several of the parties involved in her care. She claimed that the doctor should have discovered the misplaced line when he assumed responsibility for her care and that he should have reported to the hospital immediately after learning of the severity of her condition and when the nursing staff finally discovered the misplaced catheter. For his part in the suffering the woman has and will endure, the doctor recently agreed to a $1 million settlement.

This doctor, like many, refused to acknowledge his errors until a jury found him responsible. This is why it is imperative that anyone who has suffered at the hands of a medical professional contact an experienced attorney. The Oregon legal system can be complicated and confusing, but a knowledgeable attorney can simplify the process, present a strong case and achieve a better, more profitable result.

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