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Doctor errors result in $3 million medical malpractice award

There are hundreds of diagnostic tests available that could help doctors identify from what ailments someone in Texas is suffering. However, these tests are only effective if the results are accurately read, but doctor errors could be devastating. Unfortunately, one out-of-state woman claims that her husband died because his doctors did not accurately review the results of his tests.

The man suffered from a condition that caused the aortic valves in his heart to narrow. His general practitioner sent him to receive an echocardiogram in Jan. 2012. The doctor that read the results stated that the ultrasound images revealed that the narrowing was more severe than the measurements seemed to indicate. The general practitioner referred him to the cardiologist who was the defendant in the case.

A stress test was performed. While the doctor claimed that no defects were found in the stress test, it did reveal a reduction in heart function. Without reviewing the echocardiogram, the cardiologist referred the man back to his general practitioner with the recommendation of medicine. The condition worsened, and another echocardiogram was performed which revealed that the aortas had narrowed even more. He was eventually admitted to the hospital where a balloon was used to widen the aorta, but surgery was deemed too risky.

Unfortunately, the man died. His wife, who is the executor of his estate and filed the lawsuit, claims that had the general practitioner and cardiologist properly reviewed the results of the echocardiogram, earlier interventions would have occurred, potentially saving her husband's life. Even though the general practitioner wasn't a defendant in this case, the jury determined that he was 60 percent liable for the $3 million awarded to the woman while the cardiologist is 40 percent liable, leaving his portion at $1.2 million. It is unclear if the general practitioner settled out of court.

Advances in medical technology mean that doctors have higher chances of accurately and efficiently diagnosing a disease or disorder. It appears in this case that doctor errors may have cost a man his life or, at the very least, hastened his death. People in Texas who were harmed or have lost a loved one due to medical malpractice also have the option of seeking to hold the medical care professional responsible for his or her actions. Consultation service from the Maloney Attorneys is free. Contact us today to get started.

Source: courant.com, "Jury Awards $3 Million In Medical Malpractice Case", Christine Dempsey, June 26, 2015

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