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New York City Medical Malpractice Law Blog

Failed back surgery syndrome causes, symptoms, treatments

Patients in New York who are suffering from new and chronic pain following spinal surgery should know that they may have what's called failed back surgery syndrome. Patients who are suffering from the after-effects of neck surgery are also said to have FBSS.

There are two possible causes for this. One is that patients are either misdiagnosed or not thoroughly evaluated, leading to wrong-site surgery or entirely unnecessary surgery. The second is that an error was committed during the surgery. There could be, for instance, a failure in the spinal fusion hardware or a post-operative infection.

Long-term research concludes some chemotherapy unnecessary

Cancer patients in New York depend on their doctors to choose appropriate treatment plans. Presentations at a recent American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting, however, shared conclusions from long-term studies that showed some cancer therapies were unnecessary or meaningless.

An extremely common form of breast cancer called hormone-positive, HER-2 negative disease does not need to be treated with chemotherapy when it has not entered the lymphatic system. The toxic chemotherapy that many patients have endured over the years showed no benefits. Similarly, researchers found that chemotherapy for a severe form of colon cancer did not produce any positive results. Some doctors had been using the treatment for 15 years despite the absence of evidence about its efficacy.

Detecting lung cancer with blood tests

New York residents who are concerned about cancer may be interested to learn that genetic blood testing may be able to detect the early stages of some cancerous conditions. According to researchers, a set of three different genetic tests detected early-stage lung cancer between 38 and 51 percent of the time. The researchers also report that the genetic tests detected advanced-stage lung cancers with nearly 90 percent accuracy.

According to the lead author of the study, the results of the genetic testing indicate that broad genome-wide sequencing can be used to detect cancer and should be further developed as a screening aid or cancer detection tool. In some instances, it can be used to detect the early stages of curable cancers.

Bilateral MRIs more accurate for diagnosing rheumatoid arthritis

New York patients who have rheumatoid arthritis, or RA, may get a more accurate diagnosis if they undergo magnetic resonance imaging on both hands. A new study shows that bilateral MRIs are better at diagnosing the disease than unilateral MRIs. The study was published in the Journal of Rheumatology.

For the study, researchers recruited 120 patients with active RA. They then had each patient undergo a clinical exam, a radiograph and an MRI of both hands. The MRI images were analyzed and scored for osteitis, synovitis and bone erosion.

Doctor facing multiple malpractice lawsuits

Patients in New York and throughout the country trust that their doctors will treat them with care and respect. However, one cosmetic surgeon who is known for posting videos of dancing while performing procedures is the subject of multiple medical malpractice lawsuits. The suits claim that the patients had infections and suffered from brain damage because of the doctor's negligence.

In one case, a woman claims that 911 had to be called after she stopped breathing. She had seen the doctor to have a stomach flattening procedure in preparation for a wedding. The woman was not responsive when medical personnel arrived, and that patient is now reliant on her son to take care of her at all times.

Neural network able to diagnose skin cancer better than doctors

New York patients who are undergoing testing for potential skin cancer may be interested to learn that a deep learning convolutional neural network may be more accurate when detecting benign or malignant skin lesions than human professionals. The study to test this involved researchers from the U.S., France and Germany.

In the study, the convolutional neural network (CNN) was reportedly shown more than 100,000 images of both benign and malignant moles and skin cancers complete with a diagnosis attached to each image. It was noted that the images were dermoscopic, meaning each of the lesions were magnified 10-fold. The CNN reportedly improved its ability to differentiate between malignant and benign lesions with each image. Once the CNN was trained, images that it had never been shown before were introduced.

Serious eye condition commonly misdiagnosed

Doctors in New York could be misdiagnosing nearly 25 percent of all age-related macular degeneration cases, according to a study. The research was published in JAMA Ophthalmology.

Approximately 14 million Americans suffer from age-related macular degeneration, or AMD, which is the leading cause of irreversible vision loss for those at or over the age of 50. The disease causes the loss of a patient's central vision, which makes reading and other common tasks difficult. There is no cure for the condition, but doctors have developed ways to slow it down. This means early detection is important.

Safety grades shed light on hospital care quality

New Yorkers may be concerned about the quality of care they will receive when they enter the hospital for surgery or other serious medical treatment. A spring 2018 safety report card issued by the Leapfrog Group noted that standards had improved at four hospitals in Central New York while safety grades had declined at four additional medical centers in the region. The report is issued twice a year and assigns letter grades-- A, B, C, D and F -- to hospital safety practices across the country.

The reports focus on errors, accidents, injuries, infections and other potential signs of hospital negligence. Collectively, hospital-acquired injuries and infections are the third major cause of death across the country each year. In order to develop the report cards, Leapfrog examined 27 measures that are available in public reports in order to determine the overall score a medical center will receive. The report card examines how effectively hospitals protect patients from medical mistakes and other forms of preventable harm.

Research uncovers diagnostic clues for rare bladder disease

An international team of researchers has identified a biomarker associated with interstitial cystitis, a painful bladder disease that demands constant urination. Through the process of DNA methylation analysis, researchers found biomarkers in the urine of people with IC that could improve the ability of physicians in New York to diagnose the disease accurately and early.

People generally receive a diagnosis for this chronic condition after physicians rule out all other possibilities. The absence of a test for IC means that patients often first go through tests and treatments for urinary tract infections, kidney stones or cancer.

Mitochondrial patients often face misdiagnoses

Mitochondria, which are found in all cells except red blood cells, provide a majority of the body's energy. When mitochondria become diseased, therefore, they can affect almost any part of the body and cause a wide range of symptoms to arise. Patients in New York who suffer from a mitochondrial disease are probably aware that their conditions are difficult to diagnose.

A journal called Neurology Genetics has just released a study called "The Mitochondrial Disease Patient's Diagnostic Odyssey: Results of a Survey." The "odyssey" for most of the patients analyzed included visits to as many as eight different physicians as well as numerous tests. In all, researchers at Columbia University Irving Medical Center surveyed 210 mitochondrial patients with help from the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation.

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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. Representing the injured child with his team of legal and medical experts, Daniel Minc 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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