The Madison-St. Clair Record recently discussed a new medical malpractice lawsuit filed in southern Illinois. The suit involves two doctors from St. Elizabeth’s Hospital for their actions that contributed to the death of Sean O’Bonnon. Mr. O’Bonnon rushed to the hospital’s emergency room on Christmas Eve 2008 for severe strep throat.
Besides the strep throat, Mr. O’Bonnon’s body had actually stopped producing cortisol. According to the Mayo Clinic, cortisol is a hormone produced by the adrenal glands; insufficient production of it can be life threatening.
However, the two emergency room doctors failed to notice the cortisol-production problem, a condition known as “adrenal crisis.” In fact, the doctors negligently failed to even treat his strep throat, take a proper medical history, or admit him to the hospital for further observation. Instead, Mr. O’Bonnon was sent home, where he died the following day, Christmas Day 2010.
The doctors’ failure to diagnose life-threatening problems with their patients is one of the more egregious forms of medical malpractice. Patients have the reasonable expectation that when they visit a doctor with medical concerns, the doctor will be able to properly diagnose their problems if possible. All too often however, especially in emergency room context, patients are sent away before receiving the proper care. This shuffling of patients can have deadly consequences, as the O’Bonnon family discovered after their tragedy.
As our Chicago medical malpractice lawyers at Levin & Perconti know, failure to for doctor’s to recognize and identify problematic conditions can have deadly consequences.
Please contact our attorneys if you know of anyone who has similarly suffered at the hands of a failure to diagnose a serious medical problem.