Since heart disease is the leading cause of death in both men and women in the United States, every doctor should be fully aware of the myriad of symptoms which could indicate that a patient is having a heart attack. If these symptoms are missed, the patient’s life is literally on the line.
Family Reaches Settlement After Doctors Fail To Diagnose Heart Attack
On February 6th, 2012, a 41-year-old dietary technician and mother of two arrived at the ER complaining of radiating pain down her left arm. While this pain could be a symptom of numerous medical conditions, left arm pain is one of the most common signs of a heart attack and should have signaled to her doctors that her cardiac function needed to be checked immediately.
Initially, the doctor did order a cardiac evaluation including a cardiac catheterization which would have shown if any of her arteries were blocked, but unexpectedly, the doctor canceled the test and did not reorder it. The patient was sent home several days later but no cardiac workup had been performed.
On February 20th, 2012, she was once again admitted into the ER, this time complaining of shortness of breath and pain in her left shoulder and arm, both common symptoms of a heart attack. Although she was seen by a different doctor, this physician also failed to check her cardiac function and instead diagnosed her with pneumonia. Despite being admitted into the hospital, no one thought to check her heart and she went into full cardiac arrest hours after being admitted and died.
Her autopsy revealed that she had an undiagnosed blockage which resulted in cardiac arrest which had lasted for several days.
Her husband filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against the two doctors who failed to diagnose her medical condition and the hospital where she was admitted, alleging that if they had acted sooner she would still be alive.
Recently, the plaintiff and defendants were able to agree to a settlement of $3.5 million.
Settling vs Going To Trial: Which Option Is Better?
Many plaintiffs involved in personal injury cases wonder if they should decide to accept an offer to settle or if they should take their fight before a judge and jury. While considering your options, take the following into consideration:
Usually, when opposing parties agree to a settlement, the agreement results in a one-time payment to the plaintiff. It may also mean that the defendants do not admit fault.
Settlements can be a good choice for a plaintiff because:
- It means the plaintiff knows exactly how much they are going to recover for their losses.
- The payment is typically received within 30 days.
- By avoiding trial, the plaintiff saves time and money.
- The details of the settlement can remain private.
There is no guarantee that an offer to settle will be made of that the amount offered will be acceptable, which is why some plaintiff makes the decision to continue onto the trial.
Although the idea of going to trial may be stressful, there can be certain benefits, such as:
- Awards given by a jury are often much more than would have been obtained through a settlement.
- The outcome of a trial is public, so if the plaintiff wants to make a statement about the defendant’s actions, this is a good way to do so.
- Plaintiffs may feel relief and a sense that justice has been served after being given the opportunity to speak their piece in court.
When you work with the attorneys at Banville Law, we will fully explain all of your legal options and answer any questions you may have. If you choose to go to trial, you can be sure that we will prepare you for court and be by your side the entire time.
Medical Malpractice Lawsuits In New York
Despite having some of the best hospitals and doctors in the country, medical malpractice happens frequently in the state of New York. In fact, New York accounts for nearly a quarter of all med mal lawsuits in the entire country.
If you or a loved one are concerned that a doctor’s actions or inaction resulted in harm to you, it’s important that you contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible. The lawyers at Banville Law will review your case and then explain all the legal options available to you. You can rest easy knowing that we will aggressively fight not only for your rights but for the compensation that you deserve.