Medical Malpractice Articles

Radiology Mistakes & Medical Malpractice

Radiology malpractice is more common than many people realize.  Over 80 million radiology examinations are performed in the United States every year, including Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), Computed Tomography (CT or CAT scan), Positron Emission Tomography (PET scan), and x-ray studies also known as plain radiographs.  Given the immense volume of imaging studies and high expectations on radiologists to interpret those studies with speed and accuracy, it’s no surprise radiology is the eighth most common medical specialty to be implicated in a medical malpractice claim.  

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The 21st Century Cures Act Final Rule – A New Phase of Patient Centered Health IT

On March 9, 2020, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) issued a final rule that will amend the Code of Federal Regulations in ways that greatly enhance an individual’s ability to access their electronic health records through modern tools, like apps and the internet. Titled the 21st Century Cures Act: Interoperability, Information Blocking, and the ONC Health IT Certification Program, the final rule will become effective sixty-days after the date it is published in the Federal Register.

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Aortic Dissection In Patients With Chest Pain And Ischemic Electrocardiograms

In the hectic environment of the emergency department, rapid diagnosis and emergent management of life-threatening conditions must occur. In the patient with acute chest pain and an EKG concerning for an ST segment elevation myocardial infarction STEMI, the diagnosis and treatment is generally straightforward. National guidelines recommend emergent reperfusion with percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) or fibrinolytic therapy. Unfortunately, the potential for patient harm is high when acute aortic dissection causes an acute coronary syndrome and produces ischemic EKG changes.

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The Importance Of Recognizing Atypical Presentations Of Acute Coronary Syndrome

Many patients with acute coronary syndrome (ACS) lack overt chest pain or pressure and present to the emergency room with “atypical” signs and symptoms. As a result, the emergency provider may fail to consider the diagnosis of acute coronary syndrome, leading to a greater risk of serious injury or patient death. This article examines atypical symptoms of ACS in an effort to reduce instances of medical negligence or malpractice.

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Pennsylvania Supreme Court Declares Pennsylvania’s Seven Year Limit On Medical Malpractice Cases Unconstitutional

On October 31, 2019, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court handed down its opinion in Yanakos v. UPMC and declared Pennsylvania’s statute of repose unconstitutional. Before the Court, UPMC argued the statute of response complied with Article I, Section 11 of the Pennsylvania Constitution. The Court found UPMC proved the statute of repose was related to the important government’s interest of controlling the rising costs associated with medical insurance and medical care. However, UPMC failed to produce evidence of how the statute of repose actually achieved this government interest.

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What Damages are Available for Medical Malpractice?

There are various types of medical malpractice cases ranging from surgery on the wrong body part, to misdiagnosis of a disease. If a case of medical malpractice is proven to have caused harm to the patient, the patient is entitled to be compensated the amount of money damages that fairly and adequately compensates the them for all the physical injuries and financial damages he or she has sustained.

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Proving Medical Malpractice

The bare minimum required to prove a medical malpractice claim requires a patient to establish: 1. The healthcare provider undertook and had a duty to care for the patient; 2. The healthcare provider violated that duty i.e. deviated from the standard of care and was negligence; 3. The healthcare provider’s negligence was an actual cause of harm to the patient; and 4. Harm in the form of injury or death.

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Is an Autopsy Important for my Pennsylvania Medical Malpractice Case?

Pennsylvania medical malpractice and wrongful death lawsuits often hinge on the results of an autopsy. This is because the exact cause of death is the starting point for your medical malpractice lawyer to figure out what mistakes were made that led to the outcome. Successful prosecution of a medical malpractice wrongful death lawsuit becomes nearly impossible if the cause of the patient’s death is unclear or unknown.

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Delayed Diagnosis of Spinal Infection

Osteomyelitis and discitis are infections of the spine. These diseases are rare, but can lead to serious and permanent neurological injuries, including severe pain, paralysis or difficulties walking. Unfortunately, the diagnosis of discitis or osteomyelitis is often delayed by health care providers, because the primary symptom of discitis and osteomyelitis is the very non-specific complaint of back pain.

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