08 February 2006

Never mind examining the patient . . . just get the CT

I'm not one for hyping the scary malpractice stories, but this is really amazing. Three separate doctors came to the same conclusion, independently, the child suffers an unrelated injury weeks later, and the doctors are held liable.

This is why malpractice judgements need to be taken out of the hands of juries.

1 comment:

  1. That's nothing, I've been sued for much more frivolous and idiotic cases. Like a child who died of meningitis 4 months after I saw the kid in the ED for c/o ear pain and fever, whom I found to have an otits media and even prescribed Augmentin! She died 4 months later and I was sued!

    Or the drunk guy with a central cord syndrome discovered 8 hours after the fact because his alcohol level was 0.46. Naturally he was beyond the 8 hours window for Solumedrol and plus the NIH study advocating high dose steroid for spinal cord injury is completely flawed anyway. He had absolutely no signs of traumatic injury and came it after a rollover MVA in which he crossed the median, hit a bunch of cars and ended up in a ditch. He was admitted by the surgeon for observation because he was too stinkin' drunk even after 6 hours in the ED. Pan CT scans, xrays and trauma labs were all normal except for cervical DJD. CT of his C-spine was also unremarkable. We kept a c-collar on him all along, too.

    Or the 800 lbs lady who came in by ambulance in PEA (dead) and flourid pulmonary edema. They had to break down the wall of her bedroom door and the front door, dragged her out and rolled her onto a tarp, transported her in a back of the fire department's pickup truck because she couldn't fit on the EMS stryker gurney nor could she fit into the ambulance. They bagged her in the back of the pickup truck all the way to the ED. It took 7 firemen and 2 EMS guys to move her. I crich'ed her and because of poor anatomic land marks and inches after inches of fat, nicked her recurrent laryngeal nerve, fractured her thyroid cartilage...saved her life. But the ungrateful whale sued because of permanent hoarseness, and get this..."a disfiguring scar" on her neck.

    OH I COULD GO ON ABOUT HOW MANY TIMES I'VE BEEN SUED AFTER WORKING FOR 15 YEARS IN EMERGENCY MEDICINE! Knock on wood, though, have not lost a single cases. All cases have been dismissed without merits.



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