Ohio Personal Injury Law Blog

Ex-college football star says surgical error ruined his career

While victims of medical malpractice are frequently older and close to retirement, others are young and at the very beginning of their adult lives. Young adults usually have dreams and goals for their careers and private, all of which can be dashed by an incompetent physician.

That is what a former college football star is alleging happened to him. The athlete once dreamed of playing in the NFL, but that never happened after he underwent failed spinal surgery in 2010. He says his surgeon is to blame because he operated on the wrong spinal disc, according to a news report.

These cognitive errors pinpointed as causes of misdiagnosis

It has been estimated that between 5 and 15 percent of medical diagnoses are incorrect, but pinpointing the exact causes of misdiagnoses has been somewhat complicated because these errors tend to be cognitive errors -- biases, doubts or inaccurate assumptions on the part of doctors.

In other words, it's easier to see that a medical injury happened because a surgeon operated on the wrong part of the body, or because a pharmacist gave a patient the wrong drug. But identifying the kind of cognitive error that results in a misdiagnosis is a trickier.

Surgeon invents operating-room camera to prevent surgical errors

You've probably seen recent news about police body cameras and how they're expected to reduce instances of police misconduct and help law enforcement gather evidence.

Now a similar movement is underway in medical operating rooms. A Canadian surgeon has constructed a kind of "black box" that records video and audio during surgery, and synchronizes the recordings with patients' physical data. The device is expected to help victims of medical errors pursue justice, as well as help doctors review their work in order to improve care and prevent future errors.

Study: Inadequate communication main cause of surgical errors

Aptly named, "never events" are errors that should never happen in medical treatment. These mistakes are relatively rare, but when they do occur, patients tend to suffer serious injury. Still, as numerous studies have found, there is a lack of data on the frequency of never events.

Following are three particularly egregious kinds of never events that can occur during surgery: wrong-site surgery, leaving an object inside a patient's body, and surgical fires. These three kinds of errors were the subject of a study recently published in the journal JAMA Surgery. Researchers found that these mistakes were mainly due to errors in communication among medical staff. 

FDA says too-similar drug names led to medication errors

If you regularly take a number of prescription medications, then you've probably noticed how strange some of the drug names can be. Prescription drug companies try to come up with distinct names to brand their products, but there have been multiple instances when very different medications have very similar names.

Recently, the Food and Drug Administration issued a warning about two medications with similar names -- Brintellix and Brilinta. Brintellix is an antidepressant, and Brilinta is an anti-clotting agent. The FDA warned that the drugs have been mixed up at least 50 times by doctors and pharmacists.

Controversial pediatric heart surgery program closes

It likely didn't come as much of a surprise to many people who heard earlier this week that a Florida hospital has decided to permanently shelve its embattled and controversial pediatric heart program.

The pediatric cardiothoracic surgical wing of St. Mary's Medical Center has been front and center in national news outlets for an extended period, and for all the wrong reasons.

It can work 24/7 and doesn't require overtime: the hospital robot

As a percentage, 99.99 is pretty darned good in just about every conceivable realm.

And that would certainly include the ability to kill off all nasty viruses and bacteria that just love making themselves at home in hospital rooms and operating theaters.

Tainted medical scopes: the problem is not going away

Sadly, the core issues related to several harrowing reports that issued last year across the country regarding contaminated medical scopes remain unresolved.

In fact, and as noted in a recent media probe into the enduring nature of the tainted-scope problem, empirical evidence across a broad front continues to confirm that concerns -- very serious concerns -- persist with scopes.

Fighting for the rights of patients and their families

From the birth of a baby to a planned routine surgery, every medical procedure comes with inherent dangers that those within the healthcare profession must take steps to address and mitigate. While medical personnel like doctors, anesthesiologists and nurses are highly trained and experienced professionals; they are also human and therefore not immune to making mistakes.

However, when a doctor or nurse makes a mistake at work, the stakes are often much higher and can negatively impact a patient's health and potentially threaten his or her very life. For individuals who have been directly impacted or who have had a loved one harmed as result of a medical error, it's important to seek legal advice.

Can reducing medical error really be this simple?

Sometimes a problem can seem so vexing and intractable that it requires a veritable army of researchers to attack it and a notably complex solution to address it.

That is certainly the case quite often in the world of medicine, which is unquestionably a field centrally marked by complexity and ongoing innovation that is required to deal with new questions and considerations.