Articles Posted in Failure to Diagnose

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Physicians must undergo years of specialized schooling before they are permitted to practice medicine. As such, we expect that they should be able to provide acceptable medical care and diagnose and treat any illness in an appropriate time frame. When a patient is harmed due to his or her physician’s failure to treat an illness facts and information regarding the patient’s treatment from the date of the initial visit through the ultimate diagnosis is essential to proving the physician’s delay in diagnosing the plaintiff constitutes malpractice. A New York appellate court recently analyzed what documents the plaintiff is permitted to request while seeking that information, in a case in which the plaintiff alleged he suffered the loss of his leg due to a delayed diagnosis. If you sustained harm because of a delayed diagnosis it is critical to speak with a seasoned Syracuse medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible to determine your options for seeking compensation.

Facts Regarding the Plaintiff’s Treatment

Allegedly, the plaintiff injured his left foot, after which he underwent surgery which was performed by the defendant. The plaintiff then suffered an ischemic injury, which resulted in the swelling, gangrene, and infection, and ultimately the loss of the plaintiff’s leg from the knee down. The plaintiff filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against the defendant, alleging his harm was caused by the defendant’s failure to manage and treat the ischemic injury. During discovery, the plaintiff filed a motion to compel the audit trail of his treatment records, which he argued was relevant to the timing and sequence of his care following his surgery. Specifically, each time the records were accessed an entry was created which included information about the plaintiff’s care. The court denied the plaintiff’s motion, after which the plaintiff appealed.

Discoverable Materials in Medical Malpractice Cases

Under New York law, any information that is material and necessary must be disclosed in a civil action, regardless of the burden of proof. This has been interpreted to mean that any facts that will narrow issues and are relevant to the underlying dispute must be disclosed. As such, necessary means helpful, not indispensable. Further, any information that is sought in good faith that may be used in support of the party’s position in a case is to be considered material. A party seeking materials must show that the request is reasonably calculated to lead to relevant evidence. In the subject case, the court found that the plaintiff met his burden of showing that the audit trail was reasonably likely to lead to relevant evidence. Further, the defendant failed to show the court that the request was improper. Thus, the court reversed the trial court order and granted the plaintiff’s motion to compel.
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In medical malpractice cases, the burden shifts from the plaintiff, who must set forth evidence of the defendant’s malpractice, to the defendant, who must set forth evidence that he or she comported with the standard of care. When there is conflicting evidence the issue of whether the defendant committed malpractice is typically presented to a jury. In some cases, however, the evidence allows the court to find in favor of one party prior to a trial.

A New York appellate court recently discussed the standards for granting a motion for summary judgment in a medical malpractice case in which the court affirmed judgment in favor of the defendant. If you suffered harm because of a medical practitioner’s negligent failure to conduct necessary tests or diagnose an illness in a timely manner to ensure medical treatment, you should speak with a skilled Syracuse medical malpractice attorney regarding whether you may be able to recover damages for your harm.

The Decedent’s Treatment and Subsequent Death

Allegedly, the plaintiff’s decedent was a resident in a nursing home owned by the defendant for approximately fifteen months prior to her death in January 2012. The decedent suffered from several chronic health conditions, but her immediate cause of death was indicated as cardiopulmonary arrest caused by heart disease and atherosclerosis. Following an autopsy, the decedent’s final cause of death was determined to be aspiration pneumonia. The plaintiff then filed a lawsuit against the defendant alleging, in part, medical malpractice. Specifically, the plaintiff alleged that the defendant committed malpractice by failing to diagnose the decedent’s dysphagia, and failing to prevent or treat the decedent’s aspiration pneumonia. The defendant filed a motion for summary judgment which the trial court granted. The plaintiff subsequently appealed.

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In many cases, a medical malpractice claim is only a strong as the plaintiff’s expert report. If a plaintiff’s expert cannot adequately prove that a doctor breached the standard of care, it can result in a dismissal of the plaintiff’s claim, and, therefore, results in a loss of the plaintiff’s right to recover damages.

The Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of New recently discussed the standards for evaluating the sufficiency of a plaintiff’s expert report, in a case in which the court found the plaintiff’s expert failed to show a breach of the standard of care and dismissed the plaintiff’s case. If you sustained damages due to a doctor’s failure to treat you in an appropriate manner, it is important to retain a skillful Syracuse medical malpractice attorney who will assist you in obtaining an expert that can help you show your doctor should be liable for your harm.

Facts Regarding the Plaintiff’s Treatment

Reportedly, the plaintiff was treated by the defendant, an ophthalmologist, due to pain in his right eye, trouble focusing, and a drooped eyelid. The defendant examined the plaintiff and assessed the plaintiff as suffering from glaucoma. He advised the plaintiff to return in six months, or sooner if his symptoms worsened. Six months after his treatment with the defendant, the plaintiff was diagnosed with a meningioma, a benign brain tumor, and underwent surgery. The plaintiff subsequently filed a medical malpractice claim against the defendant for failing to properly diagnose the plaintiff or recommend further testing. Following the completion of discovery, the defendant filed a motion for summary judgment, which the court granted. Plaintiff appealed.

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Medical malpractice cases are typically fact-intensive and whether a plaintiff’s case is successful often depends on an expert’s interpretation of the facts. In cases where the defendant seeks to have a case dismissed, the defendant must show that there is no evidence that it breached the applicable standard of care, or if it did the breach was not the cause of the plaintiff’s harm. In arguing the care provided was not negligent, however, the defendant cannot pick and choose which facts should be considered.

This was recently explained by an appellate court in New York in a case in which the court overturned a ruling dismissing the plaintiff’s claims against the defendant on the grounds that there was a factual dispute as to the care provided. If negligent medical care caused you harm, you should consult an experienced Syracuse medical malpractice attorney to analyze the facts surrounding your treatment and whether you may be able to pursue damages.

The Plaintiff’s Treatment

It is reported that the plaintiff presented to the defendant physician assistant three times over an 11 day period in 2008 with complaints of ear pain, sinus pain, and headaches. The defendant physician assistant diagnosed the plaintiff with an ear infection and sinusitis and prescribed him antibiotics. His symptoms continued to worsen and he visited the emergency department of the defendant hospital twice during the 11 day period, where he allegedly complained of a severe headache and stated he believed he had suffered a stroke.

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If you or someone close to you suffered from multiple myeloma and you believe that the doctor was negligent in your diagnosis or treatment, you should consider contacting a seasoned Syracuse medical malpractice attorney. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, we are dedicated to truly understanding what happened in your case so we can guide you appropriately. We know how emotionally draining this process can be, which is why we will handle your case with the utmost compassion. Our goal is to protect your rights and resolve your case in the most fair and timely manner possible.

Multiple Myeloma

Multiple myeloma is a type of cancer that impacts the plasma cells in the blood. Plasma cells assist your body in fighting infections by creating antibodies that identify and attack germs but when a patient has multiple myeloma, the plasma cells inside the bone marrow often produce or perform abnormally. These atypical plasma cells start to divide nonstop and make more abnormal cells to the extent that they crowd out healthy blood cells. The condition is progressive and it is often deadly within three years of the diagnosis.

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Septic arthritis is a medical emergency that requires immediate attention. If you have lost a limb because your doctor failed to diagnose or treat septic arthritis, you may have the right to pursue compensation through a medical malpractice claim. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, we will examine your case and help you explore possible legal remedies for your harm. With extensive experience in New York medical malpractice law, we are committed to protecting the rights of each and every one of our clients.

Septic Arthritis

Septic arthritis, also known as reactive arthritic and bacterial arthritis, is inflammation of a joint caused by infection that is not caught in a timely manner. It is caused by a number of microorganisms, including bacteria and fungus being passed through a person’s bloodstream to a joint. The most common sites for septic arthritic are the hip and knee joints. An early and accurate diagnosis coupled with emergency treatment is crucial to making sure a patient’s condition does not worsen. If untreated, the septic arthritic can spread at a rapid pace and leave lifelong damage, which can lead to the amputation of the affected limb. In the most severe cases, septic arthritis can be life threatening.

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With a variety of potential symptoms and no definitive testing, lupus is a difficult condition to diagnose. As such, lupus is often mistaken for other illnesses. If you or someone close to you has suffered harm due to a lupus misdiagnosis, you should speak to a seasoned Syracuse medical malpractice attorney who can help determine whether malpractice occurred. Malpractices cases are often difficult and time consuming but we can help you understand your legal rights and options.

What is Lupus?

Lupus, the common term for systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), is an autoimmune disease that can cause a number of dangerous effects for victims. When a person has the disease, their immune system begins to attack healthy cells and tissues as opposed to protecting them. While 1.5 million Americans suffer from lupus, it is tough to diagnose, as many of the symptoms resemble symptoms that are present in other conditions. In addition, many with the condition present no symptoms for extensive periods of time, only to have the condition flare up in times of stress. When lupus is undiagnosed and untreated, it can lead to cancer, kidney disease, organ damage and can even be fatal. 

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Glaucoma is a disease in which the optic nerve is damaged. It is a progressive disease, which means timely diagnosis and treatment is imperative to correcting or improving the condition. If you suffered serious vision problems as a result of a medical provider’s carelessness, you may have a right to compensation. Our reputable medical malpractice advocates in Syracuse can examine your incident and decide whether a medical professional’s incompetence or error was a factor in your injury.

A New York woman who went blind after physicians misdiagnosed her glaucoma has won a multi-million dollar award against the hospital. The woman was seven months pregnant and just 20 years old when she went to the medical center complaining of blurred vision and pressure around her eyes during prenatal check ups. According to the lawsuit, doctors never diagnosed her with glaucoma even though she visited the hospital six times indicating the same symptoms every time. Two months later, the woman could not even see her newborn son when the doctor placed him on her chest. Several weeks later, she was officially diagnosed with glaucoma. By the time she had surgery for the condition one month later, it was too late and she was left 90 percent blind. After just a few hours of deliberation, the jury awarded her $15 million in damages.

New York Medical Malpractice Claims

Medical malpractice can be the cause of glaucoma related vision loss if the doctor failed to recognize the signs and symptoms of a patient’s glaucoma, or if the doctor failed to treat the condition properly. Failing to diagnose or misdiagnosing glaucoma can be the fault of primary care doctors, internists, optometrists or an ophthalmologist. Doctors are required to provide patients with a certain standard of care. The standard of care is typically the level of care and caution that a medical professional in the same specialty would have used under the same or similar circumstances. In order to obtain compensation for a diagnostic error related to glaucoma, you will need to prove that the mistake made by doctor was the direct and proximate of the injury.

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Lyme disease can have a devastating impact on a patient’s life. If you have suffered harm because a doctor failed to diagnose or treat Lyme disease properly, you may have a medical malpractice case on your hands. Our Syracuse medical negligence attorneys are dedicated to helping victims of medical malpractice pursue the compensation they rightfully deserve for their injuries. These cases are very difficult and it is vital to have a skilled legal advocate who can provide advice and assistance throughout your case.

What is Lyme Disease? 

Lyme disease is an infectious disease caused by bacteria called Borrelia, which is transmitted to humans through the bite of infected blacklegged ticks. Symptoms commonly associated with the disease include fatigue, headache, fever and a skin rash that looks like a bulls eye. This distinct rash is the hallmark of the infection. The disease is often misdiagnosed for two main reasons: the disease can affect each person differently and the symptoms of the disease often resemble the symptoms of other conditions. Left undiagnosed and untreated, however, Lyme disease can affect your joints, heart and nervous system.

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If you have been misdiagnosed or mistreated for epilepsy or seizure disorder, we can assist. The Syracuse medical negligence trial attorneys at our firm can help hold negligent physicians accountable for the harm that they cause. You can rely on the fact that we are committed to acting in your best interests, providing you with reliable legal advice and supporting you each step of the way. Above all, we will aim to secure the payment you need to deal with the injuries you suffered.

What is Epilepsy?

A seizure is a sudden, uncontrolled electrical disturbance in the brain. The brain communicates with the spinal cord, nerves and muscles via electrical impulses. When electrical activity in the brain is abnormal, a person can have a seizure. Epilepsy is the term use to denote “seizure disorder.” In other words, epilepsy refers to the condition of having recurrent, unprovoked seizures.

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