Articles Posted in Brain Injury

The military culture has become an unhealthy environment for soldiers to express their feelings about the men and women lost along the way. Post traumatic stress disorder affects 1 in 5 men and women who serve in Iraq and Afghanistan according to the Pentagon. Although there are outlets such as mental health clinic s for soldiers to seek out on military bases, these clinics are by some soldiers are considered to be a sign of weakness. Now there are efforts to train the soldier’s brain to cope better with PTSD.

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Brain injuries brought on by stroke, illnesses, and sudden blows to the head will dramatically change the entire functionality of each person affected. The affects of the injury could be anywhere from a concussion to a coma where those persons will suffer memory loss or personality changes. The severity depends on the type of brain injury. Families send loved ones affected by the injury to homes where they can receive more individualized care.

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Recent studies suggest arrogant, abusive, and disruptive behavior by doctors in the workplace contributes to medical mistakes, preventable complications, and even death. One nurse testifies to a patient that could have suffered serious brain injury or death if she did not call an attending doctor at home due to an unruly on-call resident. Also, through surveys and testimony, nurses and residents have reported not questioning medical mistakes made by a doctor due to fear of the doctor’s anger.

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The University of Illinois Board of Trustees will be advised today to sign off on nearly $14 Million in settlements concerning two cases. The first case involves the University of Illinois Medical Center in Chicago’s failure to perform an emergency delivery that resulted in permanent brain damage to an infant. The settlement in that case, if approved, would be $9 Million. The second case involves the failure to treat jaundice in a premature infant, the result of which was brain damage from high very levels of bilirubin. That case’s settlement is expected to be $4.8 Million. University officials have recommended approval of the settlements.

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Vanessa Jenkins gave birth to her son, Cody Smithey, in 2001 at Valley West Community Hospital. Jenkins, who is from Aurora, Illinois, was allegedly having an uneventful labor until Dr. Martin Brauwelier repeatedly used a vacuum extractor device, using it 18 times within 50 minutes, unsuccessfully. At that point an emergency Caesarean section was performed by a different doctor because the baby’s fetal heart rate displayed signs of distress, at least that is what Jenkins’ lawsuit alleged. After Cody suffered brain damage and ended up with cerebral palsy and mental retardation, Jenkins filed suit claiming his birth injuries resulted from medical negligence. The medical malpractice suit, filed six years ago against the Illinois hospital, its staff, and the doctor, settled Tuesday for $15.35 million.

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One of the greatest organizational problems facing hospitals today is the battle over medical records. Many patients find that it can take months or years to get a hold of their own medical records after treatment. Even worse, some families of victims of medical malpractice or wrongful death have waited for years to obtain their loved one’s medical records from hospitals. Often, lost or missing records are simply part of hospital error and not a deliberate attempt to delay, but on some occasions hospitals may frustrate a patient’s records request purposefully. Patients and victims’ families must be aware that statutes of limitation often require that medical malpractice lawsuits be filed within a certain period of time after the injury occurs or is discovered. This means that patients and victims’ families must decide to file a medical malpractice lawsuit and contact their medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible and begin the medical records request process.

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An Illinois man was awarded nearly $24 million in an Illinois medical malpractice lawsuit verdict. The man, now 34, entered an Illinois hospital in 2001 to have a kidney stone remove. While there, he suffered cardiac arrest, which interrupted the flow of oxygen to his brain. The injury put him in a wheelchair, took away his fine motor skills and caused spastic movements, severe double vision and slurred speech.

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A lawsuit has been filed against a county medical examiner, paramedics, and county Emergency Medical Services after a man who was declared dead at the scene of an automobile accident but was found to be alive hours later sustained permanent injuries. Paramedics responded to calls after the car accident but negligently failed to check the man’s vital signs properly not noticing his faintly beating heart. The paramedics made a further medical mistake when they failed to use monitors to check the status of the victim and when they failed to make resuscitation efforts even though it is mandated by policy. The medical examiner is being accused of medical malpractice in that he disregarded signs that the man was still alive, such as eye twitching and chest movements, for hours after the accident. The medical examiner has claimed that it was not his job to determine whether the victim was alive or dead. The man suffered a severe head injury along with a broken leg and other injuries. Now five months after the accident, the victim is just learning how to speak again. He might never fully recover as he would have if treated properly. The man’s mother witnessed the accident and suffered severe trauma and distress when she was told that her son was dead.

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The mother of a 22-year-old victim of medical malpractice has recently sponsored a new law requiring doctors to make past medical malpractice settlements and verdicts against them public. The mother claims that her son was given an unnecessary surgery causing a brain injury that made him partly-paralyzed, half-blind and psychotic after his brain was jostled by the neurosurgeon. The surgeon claimed that the patient would make a full recovery after rehab but his injuries ultimately resulted in his death. When the patient’s mother learned that the surgeon had done the procedure only once before and had a malpractice settlement and claims in another state, she decided to take action. The law stipulates that only settlements or final judgments will be publicized on the internet database. The Colorado bill was passed into law in early January 2008.

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