Delay in Diagnosis of Stroke

Brain scan in stroke patient

The Badgley Law Group is an Orlando personal injury law firm that has been helping victims of medical malpractice in Florida for over thirty years. Among those cases, are victims of a delay in diagnosis of stroke. According to research conducted by physicians from the Department of Neurology Medicine and Emergency Medicine at Yale University, the failure to recognize an ischemic stroke in the emergency department is a missed opportunity for acute interventions and prompt treatment with secondary prevention therapy. Their study examined the diagnosis of acute ischemic stroke in the emergency department of an academic teaching hospital and a large community hospital. The current guidelines recommend intravenous recombinant tissue-type plasminogen (TPA) within about 4 hours in select patients. Patients that have large vessel occlusion may benefit from early recanalization with stent-retrieval devices. Also, patients with missed strokes may not be monitored appropriately for the neurological progression of stroke syndromes or stroke-related complications. There are many forms of compensation for medical malpractice victims, which include lost wages, payment of medical bills, pain, and suffering, and more. You can learn more about your options by contacting our medical malpractice lawyer.        Continue Reading

COVID-19 Impacts Nursing Homes and Assisted Living Centers

Nursing Home Patient

Coronavirus cases in Central Florida’s nursing homes and assisted living facilities have continued to rise as the state starts to reopen. There are concerns that asymptomatic staff members, including hospice and home health clinicians, will be spreading the virus from one facility to another. According to records and as reported by the Orlando Sentinel, cases at three of Central Florida’s hardest-hit nursing homes: The Terrace of St. Cloud, the Consulate Health Care at West Altamonte, and Coquina Center in Volusia County accounted for 115 of the 182 cases in the region. Among them, 22 staff members tested positive for the virus. From April 6 to May 6, at a time when the state’s overall infection rate flattened, reported cases in Florida’s nursing homes and assisted-living facilities grew from 283 to 4,661- with about a third of those in employees. Deaths have spiraled-from 122 in Mid-April to 665 on Friday, 40 percent of all coronavirus statewide.

Gov. Ron DeSantis has announced that a mobile testing unit will run round-the-clock shifts, starting in Miami-Dade County and processing about 500 tests a day. The goal is universal testing. “Without expanded testing, we cannot know who in our facilities, whether they are residents or caregivers, are COVID positive, making it extremely difficult to stop the spread of the virus.” Increased testing may show where hot spots are, but they still do not address the underlying causes fueling the spread of coronavirus. Advocates for the long-term care community coalition, feel that what we are seeing now is the failure to ensure that nursing homes are providing appropriate staffing. They say that as it may be expected that nursing homes would be hit hard, it was not inevitable that they would be hit this hard. The group is also pointing out that with inadequate staffing, are they undertaking effective and appropriate measures to control infections in their facilities.

It is stunning to ever imagine that as of today, the number of nursing home residents who have succumbed to the coronavirus in the United States has surpassed 10,000. This surge in deaths, accounting for about 20 percent of all coronavirus fatalities in the nation, comes as nursing homes across the country continue to struggle for effective strategies to fight the virus, which can quickly overwhelm the communal setting’s once it enters. The agency responsible for monitoring nursing care, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, has issued alerts throughout the pandemic, having nursing homes restrict visitation and to comply with infection control regulations.

However, the rapid spread of the disease in nursing homes is revealing vulnerabilities that need to be addressed even after the risk of coronavirus is less imminent. Mark Parkinson, the president of the American Health Care Association and an advocate for nursing homes, pointed to flaws in nursing home regulations and surveying as possible areas of improvement. He states that, “the things we hope to learn are that the survey process that has been used for nursing homes throughout the years is just broken, it is not revealing the right things.” He continues to comment that hopefully there will be a more collaborative approach that works better for residents and the system than the one we currently have.

Nursing homes have a duty of care to protect residents and patients from highly contagious diseases, including COVID-19. Many nursing homes have failed to take swift action to protect their employees and residents during this pandemic. In most cases, the spread of the virus could have been prevented by following the CDC’s guidelines. Since the start of the spread of COVID-19, many nursing home residents contacted the virus, and many have since lost their lives. If the pandemic guidelines were followed, this could have been prevented. If you lost a family member to COVID-19 while living in a nursing home, then you should seek legal advice to consider a lawsuit that may help you and your family recover compensation for the wrongful death of a loved one. Call The Badgley Law Group at 407-487-4154 for a free consultation.

Medical Malpractice Involving Orthopedic Cases

Claims of medical errors in orthopedic procedures are common in medical malpractice cases due to the high risk of the procedures. In studies by insurance companies, most of the orthopedic claims involved perioperative and operative cases. The anatomical sites studied included the hip, knees, and the sciatic nerve lesions. These orthopedic injuries went on to medical malpractice cases where civil litigation action was taken. The Badgley Law Group is an Orlando medical malpractice law firm that handles surgical error claims and medical error cases such as injuries resulting from orthopedic care.

The insurance company study found that lower limb surgical procedures are at a higher risk for malpractice claims than all other site surgeries. A tendency for malpractice claims to focus on the lower limbs was noted for the elective surgery subgroup. Claims focusing on the iatrogenic complications of hip and knee replacement surgeries show this trend, with sciatic nerve injury the crucial adverse event for hip replacement surgeries, and postoperative prosthesis infection the crucial adverse event for knee replacement surgeries. Claims about knee replacement surgery failures often relate to the implant of an oversized prosthesis. More than 75% of the claims studied concern alleged team malpractice, with intraoperative complication as the crucial adverse event. There was also a high representation of claims on multidisciplinary teams with a missing radiographic diagnosis of bone fractures being the crucial mistake for teams made up of orthopedists and radiologists.

Orthopedic Injury Misdiagnosis

Patients can experience the often-devastating effects of a negligent physician, or incorrect diagnosis in regard to orthopedic injury. With the increased number of complaints and lawsuits that arise from medical malpractice in this area, many of these complaints are the result of primary care providers neglecting to refer patients with orthopedic injuries to an orthopedic surgeon, who is highly skilled to make a correct diagnosis.

When a patient is seen by a doctor for an orthopedic injury, an x ray should be taken to decide the patient’s injury and plan a treatment protocol. Negligence by the primary care physician can include an incorrectly read x-ray, or the lack of x-rays. This can lead to severe complications for the patient. An untreated fracture can worsen over time, potentially leading to irreversible problems. A hip or joint fracture can go on to permanent joint damage requiring a full joint replacement procedure. Complications from orthopedic injuries can be preventable if correctly diagnosed and treated from the beginning. A misdiagnosis can lead to fracture by non-union, causing permanent nerve injuries, or even deformities.

Common Orthopedic Injury Misdiagnosis

Misdiagnosis of an orthopedic injury depends on the severity of the injury and the knowledge of the physician treating the patient’s injury. Common orthopedic conditions that lead to misdiagnosis are:

  • ACL (Anterior cruciate ligament) tears are often mistaken for injuries to knee ligaments
  • A rupture of the Achilles tendon is overlooked in almost 25% of cases
  • An untreated femoral neck stress fracture can result in a re-fracture and avascular necrosis
  • An injury of this type may be caused by a slipped capital femoral epiphysis, causing little or no pain, and the underlying problem can be more difficult to detect
  • A delayed diagnosis of a scaphoid fracture can result in early wrist arthrosis
  • Ulnar collateral ligament tears often go undiagnosed by unskilled physicians
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    Medical Malpractice and Anesthesia Errors

    Anesthesia patient medical malpractice

    All surgeries and medical procedures that involve the use of anesthesia can pose potential health risks. The risk of complication is almost always expressed to the patient prior to surgery, and complications can occur from anesthesia even upon receiving the best possible medical care. However, every so often, an injury suffered by a patient due to anesthesia may stem from the improper handling of equipment or drugs from the anesthesiologist. When a patient suffers an adverse reaction after anesthesia, it is crucial to evaluate the standard of care of the anesthesiologist to determine if there was any malpractice. The Badgley Law Group in Orlando is familiar with cases involving anesthesia errors and can assist you in determining whether you have a medical malpractice claim.

    The most common anesthesia malpractice claims according to medical researchers are:

  • Teeth damage – 20.8 percent of the anesthesia medical malpractice claims.
  • Death – 18.3 percent.
  • Nerve damage – 13.5 percent
  • Organ damage – 12.7 percent
  • Pain -10.9 percent
  • Cardiopulmonary arrest – 10.7 percent
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    Medical Malpractice: Suffering From Compartment Syndrome

    Compartment Syndrome Medical Tools

    Delayed Diagnosis or Misdiagnosis Can Have Severe Consequences for a Patient

    Medical malpractice lawsuits are more common than you realize. If you are misdiagnosed or given the incorrect treatment by a medical professional, it can result in extensive bodily harm or death. If you file a claim for medical malpractice involving compartment syndrome injury, it will be necessary to prove that the standard of care was not met by the medical doctor or professional who treated you. This is assessed by consulting with other medical professionals to determine what type of care they would provide in your situation. Our attorneys at the Badgley Law Group in Orlando have the resources available to discover this information. We consult with highly experienced doctors and nurses in the medical field to decide the best strategy for your case.

    What is Compartment Syndrome?

    After an injury, blood or edema may accumulate in a compartment of the body. The tough walls of the fascia cannot easily expand, and compartment pressure rises, preventing adequate blood flow to tissues inside the compartment. Severe tissue damage can result, with loss of body function or even death. The legs, arms, and abdomen are most prone to developing compartment syndrome. Compartment syndrome can also occur from crush injuries, burns, overly tight bandaging, prolonged compression of a limb during a period of unconsciousness, surgery to blood vessels in an arm or leg, a blood clot in a vessel of an arm or leg, extreme exercise, and extension under pressure

    Acute compartment syndrome is the most common type of compartment syndrome and the majority of acute compartment syndrome is caused by a broken arm or leg. Acute compartment syndrome develops rapidly over hours or days. Compartment syndrome can develop from the fracture itself, due to pressure from bleeding or swelling, or it can occur later as a result of treatment for the fracture.  It is important to reach out to our attorneys if you have suffered an injury due to negligence or medical malpractice. There are compensations that you may be entitled to as a victim, such as compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering, and lost wages.

    Compartment Syndrome Symptoms

    Acute compartment syndrome usually develops over a few hours after a serious injury to an arm or leg. Symptoms of acute compartment syndrome may present with a new and persistent deep ache in the arm or leg, pain that is greater than expected for the severity of the injury, numbness, pins and needles, or electricity like pain in the limb, swelling, tightness, and bruising.

    Acute compartment syndrome is an orthopedic emergency that requires urgent evaluation and intervention. Early evaluation of the patient is essential for adequate care and treatment. The outcome of missed compartment syndrome can include loss of limb, kidney failure, sepsis, and death. With that said, orthopedic surgery is one of the most commonly sued medical specialties, and the indemnity payments in acute compartment syndrome cases are some of the highest medical malpractice claims. Delays in diagnosis and in treatment have been researched as the most common causes of acute compartment syndrome claims, which is most likely because of the difficulty in establishing a diagnosis of compartment syndrome. The patient’s pain may be attributed to postsurgical or post injury related pain rather than compartment syndrome. Medications given for the pain can lead to masking of the symptoms. Patients who had documented signs such as paresthesia’s or pain with passive stretch without further investigation were more likely to win the trial or participate in a settled case.

    We Can Assist with Your Medical Malpractice Case

    Failing to diagnose compartment syndrome in a hospital or clinician setting is medical negligence and can result in complete loss of function of the extremity. If you or a loved one has developed a harmful form of compartment syndrome that was the result of negligence by your treating medical professionals, contact our experienced medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible. At the Badgley Law Group in Orlando, we offer initial consultations to discuss your case and symptoms and can support you with your legal issue. Choosing the right attorney is the most important decision you will make for your case. The Badgley Law Group brings experience and excellence to your side by giving you the help you need, when you need it. Call today and speak to a medical malpractice attorney with experience in representing compartment syndrome cases at 407-487-4154.