Baby Born Pre-maturely wins $4 million verdict - page 2

Boy born prematurely wins $4 million verdict Thursday, May 01, 2003 Associated Press A Beaver County jury ruled doctors misdiagnosed pregnancy complications and awarded $4.1 million to a... Read More

  1. by   yannadey
    The ER should absorb 99% of the blame. The Dr. did the right thing under the circumstances he directed her to the ER but did he call them & alert them he was sending her there? ( that's were he earns 1% of the blame). She on the other hand may have gone in & not explanning clearly to the triage nurse all the symptoms she was having & that the Dr. told her to come in. I know my OB did just that 11yrs ago on a routine check up my b/p was through the roof he dx. me with pre-eclampsia he told my husband to take me to the ER not our county hosp. but to NYC where they are better equiped to deal with my problems. When we got there they were actually waiting for me outside with a w/c. Needless to say about 1hr or so I seized had emergency C-section then my liver ruptured. I thank my OB everytime I see him for saving me & my premature baby's life. I was having terrible headaches for 3-4 days but decided to wait until my OB visit.
    Last edit by yannadey on May 1, '03
  2. by   SmilingBluEyes
    why in Blue Blazes was the lady NOT directed to the OB floor where proper Dx and Tx could have changed the outcome? I think THAT is a big part of the problem. Here, ER's don't "do" Obstetric patients over 20 weeks unless there is a NON obstetric complaint/problem that is not complicated. I don't get this. Something stinks.
  3. by   Jay-Jay
    Any ER I've ever been to checks your vitals as soon as possible after you arrive. I just don't get this...didn't they even check her BP??
  4. by   Disablednurse
    Ok, I have two questions: first, why did they wait until the child is six years old before suing the doctor. It did not take six years to realize that the child was having problems and I would imagine that more than $400,000 has been spent since his birth. Second, how does the ER get off scott free after having her sit in the ER for 6 hours? No wonder we are having a shortage of doctors which will make it harder on people now to have a baby. People just want to sue, things have been happening for centuries. I think people are just sue happy, these days.
  5. by   LauraF, RN
    Originally posted by SmilingBluEyes
    why in Blue Blazes was the lady NOT directed to the OB floor where proper Dx and Tx could have changed the outcome? I think THAT is a big part of the problem. Here, ER's don't "do" Obstetric patients over 20 weeks unless there is a NON obstetric complaint/problem that is not complicated. I don't get this. Something stinks.
    I was thinking the same thing. No one touches a OB patient out here either except for the mother/child floor. But the doc did everything he could. What more did they want from him? As far as the 6 years goes. My daughter is a 24 weeker. They still can't decide if she is going to have problems all her life. She is 3 and can not talk or walk, but everyone says there is a possibility of it happening. I would not sue for this. No amount of money will make things perfect for my daughter. And we had a great OB. She just decided she was coming.
  6. by   P_RN
    I had stuck this in, guess it was not noticed.

    Decision assigned 10% blame to the doc 90% blame to the hospital. Doc is not available for comment because he is participating in walkout code blue to protest malpractice costs.
  7. by   NICU_Nurse
    Even that article states that she called him in the "evening." She arrived at the hospital around midnight. I'm guessing- what? Three hours? Four? Is "evening" considered 6 or 7pm? 8 even? If she was in so much pain and vomiting, and called her OB and he TOLD HER TO GO TO THE ER, why on EARTH did she wait? I see much more fault lying with the mother and/or family than I do the hospital. There is fault with the ER, specifically, whatever triage procedures they had in place for OB patients, which obviously failed to detect her problems. Though the OB could have called the ER, I don't know enough about L&D to know if this is commonly done? If so, okay, he messed up, but REALLY. Six HOURS in the waiting room? Vomiting? Extreme pain? Obviously they knew she was pregnant- the original article said that she was one day prior to her due date when this happened.
  8. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Well it is sounding more and more like the award may have been warranted, as much as I hate to say it. I mean, from what I am reading a lot of things were missed, balls dropped. If the child has a lifelong disability, well somehow SOMEONE will have to pay for care and maintanence of said child/adult later on, right? I am ALL FOR TORT REFORM, mind you. Pain and suffering must somehow be capped. But if someone/someoneS drop the ball and a person is permanently disabled, somehow that person will have to be cared for should he/she live even after the parents are gone.
  9. by   SmilingBluEyes
    They may have waited because some disabilities/problems of prematurity don't show fully how severe they can be til a child nears school-age. I am just guessing here; of course, I don't know the details of the whole case. This is why I fear litigation so much in OB; families have YEARS AND YEARS, in the case of suspected birth-related injuries/disabilies in which to sue us....long after we have forgotten the case and what was involved.
  10. by   fergus51
    I have never called the ER to tell them a patient was coming and as far as I know the docs don't routinely. I can understand the judgement against the ER/hospital, I just don't see how the OB is responsible unless he missed diagnosing this earlier or something?
  11. by   SmilingBluEyes
    agree w/you fergus.
  12. by   unikuelady
    I work in OB. Pregnancy Induced Hypertension (PIH) also called pre-eclampsia is a disorder that can have treatment when caught early in its mild form. Delivery may be delayed long enough for steroids to be given IM to the mother to aid in maturing the fetal lung tissue in the premature baby. (generally 24 hours is needed)
    The patient must be under constant monitoring in the OB department. Eclampsia is the most severe form involving seizures. Delivery of the baby is the only "cure" for this disorder. I have seen a pt walk into the OB dept c/o a headache that won't quit! and die that night in the ICU. CRASH Cesareans being performed to save these mothers and babies lives and yes mothers and babies do die from this disorder. I also have had mothers who due to culture-don't want to be a "bother" to the staff and minimize their problems. I have some questions about this case. Did the patient tell the triage nurse that she was pregnant? Did the patient describe her complaints accurately to the triage nurse? If so then I would agree that the ER should take blame for making her wait 6 hours to be seen. As far as the outcome for the child.....It sounds as if it was a miracle that he was born alive. Remember...the only "cure" for an eclamptic mother is immediate delivery of the child. Would this child have had a better outcome if he was delivered 6 hours earlier? I guess that is why the family was awarded the money.