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Portland Personal Injury Blog

Medication errors can have fatal consequences

Many Maine residents have spent some time in a hospital as a patient, whether for a medical test, surgery or some other type of procedure. Regardless of the reason for or duration of their visit, people have the right to assume the medical professionals they encounter will provide them with the best possible care. Unfortunately, mistakes do happen from time to time, and sometimes these mistakes include medication errors,which can have very serious consequences.

Last year, a stable patient in a hospital from another state suffered a seemingly horrible, and unnecessary, death when she was given the wrong medication. A doctor had ordered a full body scan, which caused anxiety for the patient who was claustrophobic. When her doctor prescribed a sedative, a nurse tried to locate the medication on the hospital's medication dispensing system but was unsuccessful. However, an override setting prompted the system to suggest a different medication that began with the same two letters as the first, but the suggested replacement is a drug used for lethal injections in executions as well as for anesthesia.

Study concludes that defective medical device may cause death

When people seek medical attention, they assume they will receive the best care possible given their individual situation, and rightfully so. However, according to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), this is not always the case, and Maine residents need to be aware they may be the victim of a defective medical device. The group's year-long investigation revealed a few disturbing realities among the manufacturers of medical implant devices: pacemakers, artificial joints, etc. According to the findings, it seems this industry is more about money and less about optimum patient care.

The ICIJ study, called The Implant Files, saw journalists collaborating with reporters and data specialists worldwide. The study included patient interviews, as well as thorough reviews of health records and device incident reports. In addition, through several million "adverse event" reports sent to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration over the past decade, journalists found that millions of injuries and thousands of deaths had been caused by faulty medical devices.

People who don't adjust driving habits for weather cause crashes

Driving is one of the most dangerous activities that most adults engage in on a daily basis. Every time you get behind the wheel, you incur the potential risk of a collision. Some of your driving habits may actually increase the risk of a crash or collision when you are on the road.

One of the most common driving mistakes is the assumption that you can drive the same way all year round. Maine has incredibly varied seasons, which is one of the perks of living in this beautiful state. However, the changing environmental and weather conditions through the seasons require adjusting your approach to driving in order to stay safe.

Car accidents: Winter weather may have contributed to fatal crash

As winter approaches, drivers need to be extra cautious behind the wheel. This time of year, winter weather can quickly cause roadways across the state of Maine to become treacherous. Slick and icy roadways contribute to thousands of car accidents each year. The majority of these accidents are minor, but some can be very serious.

A tragic crash in Cornville recently claimed the life of one man and injured another. The crash happened along Shadagee Road. According to police reports, the driver of Chevrolet SUV crossed the centerline of the highway and violently collided head-on with a pickup truck.

Medical malpractice: A wrong or untimely diagnosis can be deadly

Professional medical treatment is a process that thousands of Maine patients experience on a daily basis. Arguably the most important and crucial part of this process is a correct and timely diagnosis. In order to provide the appropriate and correct treatment, the patient must first be correctly diagnosed. Any delay or discrepancy in these initial stages can snowball into big problems for the patient down the road. Medical malpractice like this can prevent the patient from making a full recovery.

A lawsuit was filed in another state by a woman who claims that an inadequate and delayed diagnosis left her with permanent injuries. According to the lawsuit, the woman sought treatment for a lesion on her right breast. Allegedly, the woman's doctor failed to properly perform a biopsy on the area of concern and also failed to correctly interpret and follow up on an ultrasound test.

Slip-and-fall accidents happen more than most people realize

The vast majority of Maine residents visit a store or restaurant at some point every day. Although most public establishments across the state are safe and welcome visitors, it's always a good idea to be on the lookout for potential hazards. Cleaning supplies or tools left lying on the ground from routine maintenance are examples of things that can cause slip-and-fall accidents. If a customer or visitor is injured as a result of hazardous conditions in a store or restaurant, the business owner(s) could possibly be held accountable financially.

A woman in another state filed a lawsuit against Walmart over claims that she was injured due to dangerous conditions in a store she visited. According to the lawsuit, the woman was near in the infant department and encountered an uneven floorboard. The plaintiff claims this caused her to fall and hit her head on the ground.

Distracted driving is illegal in Maine, but people still do it

For many years, lawmakers and law enforcement were more concerned about young people using cell-phones in vehicles than other drivers. In Maine, the first distracted driving law on the books specifically addressed drivers under the age of 18 using mobile devices.

However, Maine lawmakers have since taken a stricter stance on distracted driving. It is against the law for anyone to text while driving in Maine, and the law specifically creates liability for drivers who text at the wheel and cause a crash. In other words, if you believe that you are the victim of a distracted driver, you may have the right to hold that person accountable in court.

In Maine, higher populations mean more motor vehicle accidents

Accidents are happening more and more on roadways in the state of Maine. A number of factors are contributing to the rise in motor vehicle accidents, but a main reason seems to be higher traffic volumes. There are more vehicles on the road than ever before as populations increase across the state. Unfortunately, not all drivers exercise caution behind the wheel. A recent multiple-vehicle crash in Norridgewock resulted in injuries.

The accident happened on Madison Road during the morning hours. According to reports, the driver of a northbound Scion crossed the centerline of the roadway and struck a loaded log truck that was traveling south. After the initial impact, the Scion then collided with a southbound Hyundai sedan, reports said.

Businesses: Keep clean sidewalks and parking lots in the winter

Living in Maine has many perks, including the fact that residents get to enjoy four seasons. Many other states do not get the pleasure of a brilliantly colored autumn and a blustery, white winter. Of course, with the enjoyment of the seasons, come the unique hurdles and complications created by changing weather patterns.

Winter snow and ice storms create unique challenges for residents in the Portland area. Snow and ice accumulation on sidewalks and parking lots, in particular, create risk for pedestrians who could easily slip-and-fall without prompt removal of snow and ice. That's why there are city laws in place mandating the timely removal of snow and ice after a storm.

Medical negligence ruins thousands of lives every year

In Maine and across the United States, those seeking medical assistance expect to be treated with an acceptable level of care. Patients place their lives in the hands of capable doctors and nurses, but these medical professionals may sometimes deviate from the accepted standard of care. This is considered medical negligence and could cause permanent injury and even the death of the patient.

A doctor in another state has been accused of implanting a birth control device in a woman without her knowledge. The woman said she underwent a procedure to remove uterine cysts about 10 years ago. The woman alleged that she told the doctor she wished to have children in the future and wanted to preserve her fertility. According to claims, the doctor inserted a plastic intrauterine device in the woman's body during the surgery without her consent.

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Terry Garmey & Associates
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Portland, ME 04101

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