Most expectant mothers in Eugene can rest assured that everything will go smoothly during the delivery process. Unfortunately, birth injuries and wrongful death occur at even the best Oregon medical facilities. These are some of the most serious and heartbreaking medical mistakes, since they put the health and lives of both the expectant mother and her newborn in jeopardy.
Medical mistakes can have serious consequences for Oregon patients. A doctor mistake such as an overdose, prescription error or misdiagnosis of a fatal condition can lead to the wrongful death of a patient. In one such case, a physician is now facing a formal complaint before the state medical licensing board after an emergency suspension of his medical license. Several patients of the doctor have died from drug toxicity.
As more cases are reported daily, a nationwide fungal meningitis outbreak continues to grab headlines. As many as 13,000 people across the country received contaminated steroid shots that may be to blame for the outbreak. It is not clear, however, how many people are actually in danger and whether the outbreak may lead to wrongful death or malpractice claims.
A patient relies on his or her doctor to prescribe drugs that are appropriate. Any breach of that trust might constitute negligence on the part of a health care professional. Yet around 20 percent of prescriptions that primary care providers give to senior patients -- those over the age of 65 -- might be inappropriate, according to a recent study. That's bad news for Oregon's seniors, who are more likely than younger patients to be taking several drugs at once. With more drugs comes more exposure to potentially adverse drug interactions.
Despite remarkable improvements in medical technology, patients in Oregon and nationwide continue to be injured by medical negligence, such as surgical errors. A new survey suggests that doctor burnout may be a prime culprit.
Drug-induced injuries remain a real threat for patients in Oregon and nationwide. Injuries can result when a person reacts poorly to a certain drug, or when a combination of drugs proves dangerous. Sometimes, a drug might be prescribed before it is safe to do so or before all of its potential side-effects have been tested. A recent example involves a line of birth-control pills sold by pharmaceutical giant Bayer.
Each year, about 17 percent of men in Oregon and nationwide will be diagnosed with prostate cancer. Upon receiving this news, most men opt for aggressive treatment options, despite the accompanying long-term side effects of that choice. However, a new study suggests that may be the wrong choice.
In the war against colon cancer -- the third most commonly diagnosed cancer -- early screening and testing might be the strongest weapons. If detected early, doctors might be able to remove polyps, or growths on the colon wall, before they become malignant.
The stakes in a claim alleging birth injuries caused by a delayed caesarean section are substantial, as today's story illustrates.
Balancing law suit reforms with patient safety can be a tightrope act. Those in favor of reforms argue that frivolous medical malpractice claims drive up costs and insurance rates. However, two recent studies indicate that far too many patient injuries in Oregon and across the country may be caused by negligence on the part of doctors and medical care providers.