Philadelphia Pennsylvania Personal Injury Law Blog

Your injury could mean a very long recovery

In the immediate aftermath of a serious injury, it is not always easy to take stock of the many ways that your recovery may impact your life. Building a fair injury claim depends not only on providing clear documentation of the medical costs the injury incurs, but also the many other areas that suffer because of the injury.

This often creates a difficult balancing act for victims. On one hand, the mounting medical bills brought on by the injury can seem overwhelming, and may threaten to destroy the victim's financial world. On the other hand, if the victim jumps at the first settlement offer he or she receives to alleviate this pressure, that offer is probably for significantly less than the true cost of the injury.

Study of mitochondrial disease describes "diagnostic odyssey"

A new report published in Neurology Genetics has shown that patients with mitochondrial diseases see an average of eight different physicians before they're even diagnosed. This "diagnostic odyssey" is something that residents of Pennsylvania will want to know more about if they suspect that they're suffering from a mitochondrial disease.

Researchers at Columbia University Irving Medical Center created a 25-item questionnaire with help from the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation, and this was given to 210 patients with self-reported mitochondrial diseases. One startling find was that the initial diagnosis patients received was incorrect in 55 percent of cases. 32 percent claimed they were misdiagnosed multiple times. Among the most common misdiagnoses were psychotic disorders, fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome.

Could a drug error happen before or after surgery? Absolutely

Are you scheduled for surgery in the near future? Are you concerned about the procedure, but realize that it's essential for your health?

You're sure to have many questions on your mind, but you also know that you have to put your faith in your medical team in order to get your health back in order.

Study: mobile apps may help lower misdiagnoses

One of the primary causes of medical malpractice injury in Pennsylvania is misdiagnosis and miscommunication. It's not uncommon for doctors to correctly diagnose a condition but for wires to get crossed between the diagnosis and the actual treatment administered. In a recent study, some researchers concluded that mobile apps can improve accuracy in test ordering and diagnosis among doctors.

The study, published in the Journal of American Medical Informatics Association, was conducted by researchers at the Baylor College of Medicine and the Center for Disease Control. The study reflects that mobile apps, specifically those related to detecting hematologic disorders, can greatly increase a doctor's ability to diagnose disorders and order appropriate lab testing. This is particularly useful given the difficulty normally associated with diagnosing such conditions.

Medical mistakes that can happen during surgery

Every year, patients throughout Pennsylvania and the rest of the U.S. are the victims of medical mistakes. Many different medical errors can happen, resulting in serious injuries or fatalities.

For example, some people are accidentally given doses of medications that are much to high. This may result in overdoses and potential death. Others are given the wrong blood, causing a bad reaction. In some cases, doctors mix up feeding and chest tubes, meaning that patients might get their food or medicines pumped into their chests rather than their stomachs.

Traumatic brain injuries may take time to show symptoms

With the majority of serious injuries, you know right away that there is something wrong. Broken bones, for example, can cause excruciating pain or may even leave a limb unable to support any weight. Spinal cord injuries could immediately impact your ability to use your lower body. Cuts and penetrating wounds will produce extreme pain, as well as bleeding.

Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), which are a very serious form of injury, however, are not always so obvious. For many people, the development of symptoms takes days or even weeks after the initial injury. For those who experience accidents, whether it's a motor vehicle collision or a slip-and-fall incident, watching for signs of TBIs is important.

What is failure to diagnose, and how does it hurt patients

When people think of medical malpractice, they often imagine a surgeon leaving a tool inside a patient or perhaps operating on the wrong area of the body. They may also think of prescription drug or medication mistakes, such as debilitating interactions between two prescribed medications. Fewer people realize that doctors can engage in malpractice by mistakes of omission, not just commission.

A doctor doesn't have to directly cause you bodily harm to have committed an act of medical malpractice. Failing to diagnose someone seeking treatment who later dies or experiences life-altering consequences as a result of that failure is also a form negligence and thus, of medical malpractice. It is tragically common, especially for certain groups of people.

Care and therapy after a serious brain injury

Imagine that you suffered a serious brain injury in a motor vehicle accident. The more you look into your treatment options, the more kinds of therapies you'll find available. However, these therapies – although many of them are effective – tend to cost a great deal of money.

Fortunately, for those whose brain injuries happened as a result of a car crash caused by another driver's negligence, it might be possible to recover financial damages to pay for this treatment and care.

How might a mild brain injury affect a working professional?

Mild traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) can occur any time a person suffers a blow to the head, and may cause a wide range of symptoms, some of which may seriously compromise the victim's ability to do his or her job. While this is true for just about any line of work, professionals who perform mentally taxing work and must maintain communication with other people throughout the course of their workday may find a mild TBI particularly frustrating and destructive to their careers.

Mild TBIs may affect each victim differently, with some victims experiencing primarily physical symptoms like ongoing headaches or nausea. In some cases, a victim may even suffer from seizures he or she never experienced prior to the injury. While these symptoms are certainly painful and disruptive, they also indicate that the victim clearly suffers from some medical issue and needs ongoing care to recover properly.

What happens if doctors fail to diagnose or misdiagnose cancer?

You know there's something wrong with your body. After all, it's your body. The symptoms, lumps or other issues you've been having are not normal. Knowing that you need help to diagnose and treat whatever caused the issue, you seek medical advice. Sadly, your doctor does not take your symptoms seriously. Instead of fully examining you and ordering diagnostic tests, he or she simply assumes your symptoms are the result of something minor.

Older adults may have worrisome symptoms attributed to their aging, while women's symptoms could end up blamed on menstruation or menopause. It is also common for people who are overweight to face criticism for the size of their bodies instead of adequate examination and care. Your doctor could choose to blame your size, weight, age or gender for your pains, digestive issues and even headaches instead of finding the real cause. When the underlying cause is actually cancer, the result could be tragic.

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