What Went Wrong in the Operating Room?

Rock Hill Hospital Settles Multimillion-Dollar Malpractice Lawsuit

operationMedical malpractice can occur when doctors and hospital staff misdiagnose, delay a diagnosis or cause a newborn child to sustain birth injuries during labor or delivery. However, malpractice can even occur during what are supposed to be routine medical procedures.

This is what allegedly happened to the family of Emma Davis over three years ago when she suffered a wrongful death while undergoing a surgical procedure to receive a pacemaker implant; a procedure that has become so advanced that it no longer requires most patients to stay overnight at the hospital. In fact, 68-year-old Davis of Chester, South Carolina, had expectations that she would be going home that same day.

What Went Wrong in this Rock Hill Hospital Operating Room?

The lawsuit against Rock Hill’s Piedmont Medical Center claimed that the cardiologist performing the procedure, Dr. Vasant Patel, along with the medical staff of the hospital failed to take the measures necessary to prevent Davis’ wrongful death. These alleged negligent actions included improperly monitoring her oxygen level throughout the surgery, which dropped dangerously to 80 percent. Medical professionals consider any oxygen reading under 90 percent to be an issue while under sedation. The lawsuit also alleged that when her oxygen level dropped to 80 percent, the team responsible for monitoring the level did not take any action to remedy the situation for four minutes.

The lawsuit against Rock Hill stated that the true cause of death was ultimately the improper placement of Davis’ breathing tube. Instead of the medical staff placing the tube into her trachea (leads to the lungs), the claim alleged that her breathing tube was placed into her esophagus (leads to the stomach). According to the allegation, the staff attempted to correct this mistake, but again, they placed the breathing tube incorrectly into her esophagus. By that time, the staff had neglected to monitor Davis’ oxygen level for 19 minutes, and she was only at 50 percent. She died shortly thereafter.

Medical Malpractice Victims and Their Families Have Rights Under the Law

Sadly, the latest statistics on the subject found that roughly 98,000 individuals die each year because of preventable medical errors. According to a recent report by the Public Citizen’s Health Research Group, South Carolina is the worst state when it comes to taking legal action against negligent doctors responsible for serious injuries and wrongful deaths caused by their error.

If you are experiencing the devastating effects of medical malpractice, or if a family member died resulting from surgical errors, contact the Columbia injury lawyers at Proffitt & Cox, LLP for a free consultation. They have experience gaining multimillion-dollar recoveries for their clients suffering because of medical malpractice. This work includes a $3,000,000 recovery for a client who suffered a life-threatening infection after a surgeon performed an elective surgery. Call the attorneys at Proffitt & Cox today at (803) 834-7097 or toll free at (877) 276-0533 to learn more about your rights.

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