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New York City Medical Malpractice Law Blog

4 skin conditions a dermatologist says are commonly misdiagnosed

Patients in New York and across the country often visit a doctor when they notice an unusual blemish or spot on their skin. Some skin imperfections are nothing more than sun spots or acne. However, others may indicate something requiring immediate attention. If initial signs of skin cancer or similar conditions are overlooked, a delay in treatment could have serious consequences for patients.

According to a board-certified dermatologist at New York University School of Medicine, there are four skin conditions commonly misdiagnosed. A doctor misdiagnosis of basal cell carcinoma, the most common form of skin cancer in the United States, sometimes occurs because the resulting small, pink bumps resemble acne. Affecting 16 million Americans, rosacea may also be misdiagnosed as acne. The chronic skin condition's characteristic redness can vary greatly in the shades and tones displayed, which may make it difficult to detect from appearance alone.

2 diagnostic tests proven to reduce preterm birth complications

It's a sad reality that not all pregnancies end at nine months with a healthy bundle of joy. For parents of babies born with birth complications, the normally celebratory event is often mitigated by worries and fears over the medical uncertainties that lie ahead for their newborns.

Given that, the medical community has the obligation to do all they can to prevent birth complications for their obstetric patients.

Surgeons don't always follow error disclosure rules

A New York surgeon who makes a mistake is supposed to inform the patient of that error. However, a survey published in JAMA Surgery found that some surgeons only follow some national guidelines related to disclosing such an error. The survey involved more than 60 surgeons who worked at various VA medical centers. Of the eight national guidelines for error disclosure after a surgery, most who participated in surgery said that they followed five of them.

In most cases, surgeons disclosed the error, explained to the patient or family why it happened and expressed remorse that it occurred. Most also showed concern for the patient's health and offered to help fix any issues that may occur as a result of the mistake. However, only 55 percent of those surveyed said that they apologized or talked about whether there was anything that could have prevented the error.

Boy hit by box truck on Brooklyn street

New Yorkers walk. We walk to work, to the subway, to the gym. But when that many pedestrians tangle with the heavy traffic on the city streets, disasters happen regularly.

Such was the case earlier this month in Brooklyn. On Thursday, Oct. 19, a 9-year-old boy suffered a severe fractured leg after getting hit by a box truck. The child was walking across Linden Boulevard near its intersection with Crescent Street at approximately 3:41 p.m.

Detecting cardiomyopathy

People in New York who have cardiomyopathy may not exhibit symptoms of the disease, which is why it is essential to know how to identify someone who may have a high likelihood of developing the condition. In some cases, there may be no symptoms or signs in the early stages of the disease, but the indications of heart failure may become obvious as the heart begin to deteriorate.

Some symptoms and signs of cardiomyopathy include having difficulty with breathing, particularly when one is physically exerting oneself. In addition to fatigue, swollen ankles, legs, abdomen, feet and veins in the neck are other important indications.

Diagnosing exploding head syndrome

New York patients who have trouble sleeping may be interested to learn about a sleep disorder known as exploding head syndrome. People who have this condition often experience a loud bang or even a gunshot noise when they try to go to sleep, even though these noises actually never occur. For many, the syndrome is overlooked by doctors.

A review of existing research showed that there are few diagnostic measures and treatment plans. In fact, there is very little scientific evidence regarding what causes exploding head syndrome. It is thought that the condition occurs when the body does not shut down for sleep properly. For example, instead of following a specific sequence to shut down, the body activates certain groups of neurons that produce bursts of noise. It appears that those who normally have disrupted sleep schedules are more likely to experience these noises.

Malpractice awards and settlements are often significant

Medical malpractice victims in New York and around the country often suffer catastrophic harm and are sometimes awarded significant damages by juries. A Baltimore hospital agreed to pay $190 million to 8,000 litigants in 2014 after it was revealed that one of their most senior gynecologists had used surveillance equipment to secretly photograph his patients. Another 2014 medical malpractice case involved a 29-year-old woman who was left brain damaged and paralyzed in part because paramedics lacked the equipment needed to treat her anaphylactic shock. A jury awarded her $172 million for her past and future medical expenses and pain.

A pregnant New York woman suffered three heart attacks and lost both of her legs after mistakes were made during routine ectopic surgery. The jury hearing the case concluded that the senior physician present had strayed from generally accepted medical standards and ordered the hospital involved to pay the woman $62 million in damages. Surgeons can also face medical malpractice lawsuits for failing to warn their patients about the risks involved as a New York doctor learned in 2010 when a jury ordered him to pay a Bronx woman $60 million.

Type 3c diabetes commonly misdiagnosed, study finds

Those who have diabetes mellitus or who are aware of the disease may only know of two types: type 1 and type 2. However, some may be interested to learn that there is a third type, which is commonly called type 3c or Diabetes of the Exocrine Pancreas. This type of diabetes is caused by damage to the pancreas. A study found that this type of diabetes was commonly misdiagnosed by doctors as type 2.

Misdiagnosing type 3c diabetes for type 2 diabetes can waste time as the treatments for the two types are different. The treatment for type 2 diabetes is not as effective for those who have type 3c. This means that those who are misdiagnosed may not be able to manage their condition effectively. Part of the problem is that type 1, type 2 and diabetes associated with pregnancy are the only types regularly mentioned by medical groups, including the American Diabetes Association.

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Case of the month

$7,750,000 Recovery Due to Negligent Care in NYC Pediatric Intensive Care Unit

Our client, a 5 year-old patient receives almost $8 million in compensation from an NYC hospital in a medical malpractice claim won by Rosenberg, Minc,Falkoff & Wolf. Daniel Minc, representing the injured child with his team of legal and medical experts said "it was great day for the family".

The case involved negligent care on the part of the hospital pediatric intensive care unit for failing to observe bleeding from a simple biopsy wound which caused Neurological damage.

Medical Malpractice Blog

$25 million verdict against New York Methodist Hospital
When a child is born, parents expect the doctor, nurses and other staff to provide care that is up to the...
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