The loss of a loved one to a serious illness can take a major toll on the surviving family. In some cases, the loss is expected but no less difficult to cope with. Unfortunately, some families may face the additional aspect of believing that medical malpractice contributed to the death, and filing a lawsuit may be in their future.
Louisiana readers may be interested in a medical malpractice suit that recently came to a settlement in another state. The situation began when a woman had surgery for a stomach ulcer in 2013 after experiencing abdominal pain. During the surgery, tissue samples were taken for testing, and the results reportedly indicated that the tissue was benign. However, sometime later, the woman was diagnosed with stage IV cancer.
The woman died in 2016, and her family believes that medical malpractice contributed after doctors did not properly diagnose her terminal cancer. The suit claims that there were not enough tissue samples taken for testing and that the biopsy was taken from the wrong location. If the cancer had been detected during her 2013 surgery, an expert indicated that she may have had a five-year survival rate of 50% to 68%. Though the defendants claimed that the delay did not affect the woman’s life expectancy because the cancer already metastasized in 2013, they agreed to a $1.28 million settlement.
When Louisiana residents go to a doctor with medical concerns, they often expect to receive the best care. Unfortunately, overlooked information or incorrect testing could easily result in a delayed diagnosis. As this case shows, patients could lose valuable time with family due to a delay in treatment, and surviving family members may have reason to file medical malpractice claims for compensation.