Articles Posted in Medical Malpractice

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IVInjuries caused by an air embolism can be severe. If you or a loved one has been hurt by an air embolism, you need to contact a skilled Syracuse medical malpractice attorney who can help. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, we have represented many clients in medical malpractice cases and can apply our knowledge to use in your case.

There are 29 separate events classified as “never events” by the National Quality Forum, and one of those events is an air embolism. Never events refer to patient safety incidents that result in serious patient harm or death that are entirely preventable and thus should never happen.

An air embolism is a blood vessel blockage caused by one or more bubbles of air or other gas in the circulatory system. When an air bubble enters a vein, it is called a venous air embolism. When an air bubble enters an artery, it is called an arterial air embolism. These air bubbles can travel to your brain, heart, or lungs and cause heart attack, stroke, or respiratory failure. While air embolisms are rare, they can be deadly.

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intubationIntubation is an important procedure that saves countless lives by providing an airway for patients to breathe. If you or someone close to you suffered an injury due to an intubation error, you need to reach out to a skilled Syracuse medical malpractice attorney who can help. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, we are committing to getting patients the compensation they need to deal with their injuries.

Intubation involves inserting a long tube down the patient’s trachea (airway) that is connected to a ventilator. The ventilator acts as the “lungs” for the patient during many surgical or other medical procedures. While the procedure is relatively common, it is also fraught with potential complications. One study found that errors take place in 22 percent of intubation attempts, with a frequency of up to 40 percent in selected ambulance systems. These findings indicate frequent mistakes associated with this life-saving technique. Intubation errors can occur in a number of ways, including but not limited to:

  • Improper placement of the tube into the esophagus;
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bedIf your loved one’s coma was caused by medical negligence, or your loved one did not receive appropriate care after lapsing into a coma, you need to speak to a diligent Syracuse medical malpractice attorney without delay. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, we understand how to navigate complex medical malpractice claims. We can help you understand all of your legal options, including the pros and cons associated with each of them.

A coma is a condition in which a patient cannot be awakened and does not respond to pain, light, or sound in a normal way. In other words, a coma is defined as a deep and, many times, prolonged unconsciousness. A person in a coma does not respond to external stimuli (i.e., a light in his or her eyes or a prick on the hand) and does not make any voluntary actions. In some instances, coma patients may make sounds or movements or even speak. However, these actions are typically not voluntary. Comas typically do not last longer than several weeks. If a coma lasts longer, it may lead to a persistent vegetative state or brain death.

A variety of medical errors could result in a coma, including but not limited to:

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beachSkin cancer can be a devastating diagnosis if it is not caught early. If you or a loved one has been injured or lost their life due to what you suspect may have been a failure to diagnose skin cancer, you may be able to recover compensation for your harm. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, our Syracuse medical malpractice attorneys are committed to using our experience and background to get patients a fair outcome in their cases.

Skin cancer can be melanoma or non-melanoma. Non-melanoma skin cancer can either be basal cell carcinoma or squamous cell carcinoma. In most cases, skin cancer occurs on areas of the skin that have been exposed to the sun. Unfortunately, skin cancer is more common than you may think. In fact, it is the most common form of cancer diagnosed in the United States. Each year, approximately one million men and women are diagnosed with skin cancer. Nearly 60,000 of those cases will be melanoma, which accounts for a disproportionate number of skin cancer deaths.

An early and accurate diagnosis is critical in skin cancer treatment. Moles, marks, and birthmarks that change in size should be treated with suspicion and seen by a physician. A diagnosis of skin cancer is made by taking a biopsy of the skin lesion and testing it to see if cancer cells are present. The American Cancer Society has published data highlighting that a patient with a small localized cancerous lesion has a five-year survival rate of 98 percent. As these lesions grow, however, and a malignant melanoma metastasizes, the chances of survival significantly decrease. By the time a cancer has spread to a person’s bones or organs, the survival rate is only 15 percent.

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bloodDealing with a medical injury can be daunting. If you or a loved one has suffered harm due to a hematologist’s negligence, you should consult a seasoned Syracuse hematologist malpractice attorney. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, we are committed to pursuing the justice and compensation you need to move on with your life.

A hematologist is a doctor who specializes in the study of blood, blood-forming organs, and blood diseases. Generally, a hematologist treats patients with blood disorders, such as types of hemophilia, leukemia, lymphoma, and sickle cell anemia. Since blood runs through every organ and tissue in the body, hematology touches all fields of medicine. There are currently approximately 12,000 hematologists practicing throughout the United States.

While medical malpractice cases against hematologists are rare, they do happen. In one Michigan case, an anemic (i.e., iron deficient) woman sued her hematologist when he continued to prescribe her iron supplements and iron infusions, even though her iron deficiency no longer existed. As a result, the woman received more than three times the normal amount of iron supplements her condition required, leaving her with excessive iron deposits in her liver, spleen, and bone marrow. The only way to remove the excess iron was regular blood removal until the iron levels returned to normal. In such a case, had the hematologist monitored the iron levels throughout the woman’s treatment, the excess iron would not have been administered.

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earAn otolaryngologist specializes in the ears, nose, and throat and is often known as an ENT. If you believe that you or someone close to you has been injured due to the negligence of an ENT, you need to reach out to the experienced Syracuse ENT malpractice attorneys at DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers. With years of experience, we know how to navigate these complex cases.

ENT doctors assess, diagnose, treat, and manage diseases, abnormalities, and other health problems affecting the ears, nose, and throat, as well as the head, neck, mouth, sinuses, and larynx (voice box). Surgeries are typically performed to improve a patient’s quality of life. For example, septoplasty (nose surgery) may be performed to help a patient breathe better. The majority of ENT procedures are relatively straightforward, posing little risk to the patient. However, ENT errors do happen and can significantly affect a patient’s health. Common examples of conduct that may give rise to an ENT malpractice case include but are not limited to:

  • Failure to order the appropriate tests, such as an MRI or CT scan;
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footImproper treatment of seemingly simple foot problems can have devastating, even life-altering consequences for a patient. If you believe that you or your loved one has been injured due to podiatry malpractice, we can help. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, our Syracuse medical malpractice lawyers have years of experience resolving complex medical malpractice claims and can put our knowledge to use in your case. You can rest assured that we will make every effort to get you full and fair compensation for your harm.

Podiatrists are foot doctors who specialize in providing treatment for the feet. Their services can range from remedying an ingrown toenail to complex surgery on the bones. Podiatrists are trained and licensed to perform a relatively narrow set of procedures. As a result, proper treatment of a foot issue often requires the involvement of other medical specialists, such as neurologists, orthopedists, and other physicians. It is important to note that these medical professionals are not allowed to perform orthopedic surgery or treat patients who develop serious infections as a result of podiatric treatment.

When podiatrists fail to follow professional standards of care, they may be liable for medical malpractice. Common examples of podiatrist malpractice include but are not limited to:

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doctorA simple communication error can have devastating consequences for a patient’s health. If you or someone close to you has been injured due to a physician’s communication error, you need to speak to a skilled Syracuse medical malpractice attorney who can evaluate the facts of your case. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, we understand how to represent victims who have been harmed by medical malpractice. Time is of the essence in these cases, so it is important to act quickly if you suspect malpractice could have played a role in your harm.

Sadly, medical mistakes are the third-leading cause of preventable injuries and death in the United States, after heart disease and cancer. One mistake that is all too common is the failure of health care professionals to properly communicate with either each other or the patient. This often happens when multiple doctors are involved in a patient’s care. What happens is a doctor will hand a patient off to the next doctor when their shift ends, the nurses who administer care also change shifts, and sometimes clinical information about the patient does not get communicated from the departing medical professional to the new one.

An estimated 80 percent of serious medical mistakes involve some form of miscommunication. In fact, communication failures in health care settings can be linked to 1,744 deaths in five years, according to Malpractice Risks in Communication Failures. The study also found that medical errors could be reduced by about 30 percent if communication improved between medical professionals and patients. Communication errors can include but are not limited to:

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allergyIf you believe you or someone close to you has been injured due to medical malpractice involving a drug allergy, you may be able to take legal action against the at-fault party. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, our hard-working and diligent Syracuse medical malpractice attorneys are committed to pursuing the compensation you deserve for your harm.

A drug or medication allergy takes place when the immune system reacts to a medication. Drug allergies can result from virtually any type of drug, from over the counter medications to prescriptions. Patients given medications to which they are allergic can suffer a variety of consequences, including but not limited to rash or hives, itching, swelling, diarrhea, respiratory problems, dizziness, light headedness, and even loss of consciousness. In some cases, allergies can be life-threatening because they can send the patient into anaphylaxis, which is an acute allergic reaction that sends the body into shock. Anaphylaxis can take place within seconds or moments of being exposed to the drug to which the individual is allergic.

Patients who see a doctor for a medical condition expect competent care. Medical professionals have a duty to adhere to a standard of care when treating patients. The standard of care refers to the level of care and caution that a reasonably prudent medical professional in the same specialty would have used under the same or similar circumstances. When a medical professional causes injuries or death by failing to adhere to the standard of care, that medical professional will likely be liable for malpractice. For example, if a doctor administers a drug to a patient, to which the patient is known to be allergic (i.e., it is listed in the patient’s chart), the doctor will likely be liable for malpractice if the drug ends up causing injuries to the patient. This is because a doctor using the appropriate level of care would not miss an allergy clearly listed on a patient’s chart.

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eyeWhile cataract surgery is very common, it is not risk-free. If you have experienced complications after cataract surgery, you may be entitled to compensation for your harm. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, our seasoned Syracuse medical malpractice attorneys can examine the specifics of your injury and determine whether malpractice occurred. You can rest assured that we can fight to protect your rights at every step of the way.

A cataract is a clouding of the lens of the eye that adversely affects a person’s vision. Typically, cataracts affect older people. In fact, by the age of 80, more than half of all Americans have had a surgery to correct a cataract in either one eye or both eyes. While a cataract can happen in both eyes, it is not contagious.

Cataract surgery is one of the most common surgical procedures performed in the country. According to the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery, approximately 3 million people in the United States receive cataract surgery annually. Cataract surgery is a procedure to remove the lens of your eye, in most cases replacing it with an artificial lens. An ophthalmologist performs cataract surgery on an outpatient basis. While the procedure has an extremely high success rate, there are always risks associated with any surgical procedure, and cataract surgery is no exception. Risks associated with cataract surgery include the following:

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