Failure to Diagnose Results in Loss of All Four Limbs for Woman

Patients trust their healthcare providers to treat them with the best professional standards possible. They rely on doctors and similar medical workers to provide an accurate diagnosis, options for treatment and inform them of possible alternative conclusions. Unfortunately, patients are not always given the right information to make the best decision for their own care. This is what one family says happened to a woman who lost all of her limbs due to a failure to diagnose her condition. Connecticut residents may be interested in this case even though it occurred out-of-state.

The woman had sought treatment at her local hospital for several symptoms, including abdominal pain, a fever and an accelerated heartbeat. She was discharged and allegedly told to seek further treatment with her own gynecologist as the hospital staff believed she was having complications with fibroids. She fainted at her home and had to be rushed back for treatment. She was in septic shock from an undiagnosed strep infection and ended up having to have all four of her limbs amputated.

She and her family filed a medical malpractice suit against the doctor who treated her and against his physician’s assistant, saying that she was not told that she could have a bacterial infection. Those who represented her claimed that antibiotic treatment could have stopped the infection and prevented her tragedy. A jury agreed and awarded the woman and her husband over $25 million dollars in damages, finding both the physician and his assistant liable.

This woman will likely need lifelong care because of her disability. Anyone here in Connecticut who is in a similar situation may want to consider filing a civil claim the way she and her husband did in order to help with future treatment, cover medical expenses and manage other costs that might arise from such misfortune. No one should ever have to suffer from a doctor’s failure to diagnose their condition, but should the unthinkable happen, there are ways to make those responsible accountable for their action or inaction.

Source:, “Jury awards Milwaukee woman $25.3 million in medical malpractice case,” Cary Spivak, July 7, 2014

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