A delay in diagnosing or treating bacterial meningitis can lead to brain damage, cerebral palsy, limb amputations and even death

Meningitis is an inflammation of the protective cover surrounding the brain and spinal cord due to an infection.  Meningitis can be a life-threatening condition and should be treated as a medical emergency.  The infection occurs most often in newborns, infants, children, young adults and college students due to the organisms group B strep, ecoli, listeria, nisseria or streptococcus.

Cardiologist pleads guilty to massive insurance fraud

A well-known doctor has pleaded guilty to one of the largest medical fraud cases involving a sole practitioner. The physician, who owned and operated several cardiology centers in New York and New Jersey, provided the same diagnostic medical testing to thousands of patients whether they needed it or not, citing angina as a justification for the testing. He then billed and collected payouts from Medicare, Medicaid and private insurance companies.

Medical malpractice verdict upheld in missing ovary case

  In a strange case of a “vanishing” ovary, Pennsylvania Superior Court upheld a $2.4 million medical malpractice award for the family of a woman who died of ovarian cancer. The husband of Sharon Zawatski filed suit against a surgeon and Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center claiming her treatment was negligent because only ovary was removed, allowing the cancer nto return. The Wilkes-Barre area woman died at age 59 in 2008.

Wisdom tooth surgery leads to teen’s death

Routine wisdom tooth surgery that ended in the death of a teenager in 2011 recently ended in a legal settlement of the case. The Baltimore Sun, reporting on the medical malpractice case recently, noted that 17-year-old Jennifer Michelle "Jenny" Olenick died after being deprived of oxygen during the procedure two years ago. The lack of oxygen to her brain caused her to lapse into a coma and die 10 days later.

Medical malpractice results in foot amputation, verdict

A wrong diagnosis resulted in the amputation of a woman’s foot, a jury in Spokane found in awarding $813,000 to the woman in a medical malpractice case. Darlene Turner claimed in a civil suit that her doctor failed to perform an appropriate physical when he diagnosed her as having terminal cancer. According to a news report, she actually had been suffering from pneumonia, which caused her to lapse into a coma and later resulted in her left foot being amputated. The jury award was to compensate Turner for past and future medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering.

Study: Wrong diagnoses cause many injuries, deaths

 Between 80,000 and 160,000 patients suffer preventable injury or death because of a medical misdiagnoses each year in the United States. That was the conclusion of an extensive study by researchers from Johns Hopkins Medical Center which found that mistakes made in diagnoses – including missed, wrong or delayed diagnoses – happened more often and with worse consequences than all other medical errors.

Medical board fails to discipline doctors who err

A review recently found that the Wisconsin Medical Board failed to severely discipline doctors who committed egregious errors, many in which patients suffered serious injuries or even death. The report by the State Journal reviewed 218 cases that led to board discipline from 2010 to 2012 and found that in more than half the cases doctors received only a reprimand – likened in many cases to a “slap on the wrist” -- and that in dozens of cases there was no disciplinary action taken at all.

Cardiac arrest after surgery results in brain damage

The toddler was checked into a Chicago hospital in December 2011 for relatively routine surgery to repair an undescended testicle. But the child suffered cardiac arrest after the operation and it took five minutes for medical personnel to respond. It was too long and too late. The child suffered brain damage due to oxygen deprivation. Recently the Cook County Board approved a $20 million settlement for the child’s family, which had sued John H. Stroger Jr. Hospital of Cook County.

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