lawsuit negligence to blame in death of pennsylvania physician

It is an incredible tragedy when a young person on the precipice of a promising career that would allow her to make a real difference in the world suddenly loses her life. What makes circumstances like these all the more tragic, however, is when that young person’s death could likely had been avoided altogether had it not been for otherwise preventable negligence.

Last week, the family of a 26-year-old woman filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the health facility here in Pennsylvania where she received what the lawsuit classifies as negligent medical care. The woman died of a blood clot in her brain just two weeks after graduating from medical school.

According to the lawsuit, the young physician — we’ll call her Jennifer — was officially given her medical degree by The Commonwealth Medical College in Scranton on May 11, 2013. Part of the medical school’s first-ever graduating class, Jennifer was poised to begin her residency in pediatrics just a few months later.

Over the 2013 Memorial Day weekend, however, Jennifer came to the emergency room on the night of Sunday, May 26, complaining of both bruising easily and severe headaches that she had been unable to treat effectively with over-the-counter medications.

Medical professionals initially diagnosed her with a condition known as idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura, a medical condition typically caused by low blood platelet levels that is often accompanied by bruising and bleeding.

Jennifer was subsequently admitted to the hospital and given both pain medication and Prednisone to treat her condition for the next 24-plus hours.

According to the lawsuit, at no time from the evening of Sunday, May 26, to the early morning hours of Tuesday, May 28, was either a neurologist consulted or some type of simple head imaging ordered.

As explored in our next post, the lawsuit alleges that this proved to be a fatal medical mistake.

To be continued …

If you believe that a misdiagnosis, surgical error or other form of medical malpractice was responsible for your serious personal injuries or the loss of a loved one, consider speaking with an experienced attorney to learn more about your rights and your options.

Source: The Times-Leader, “Malpractice suit filed in young doctor’s death,” Jerry Lynott, Jan. 8, 2014

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