Category: Misdiagnosis

Farmer Receives 1.5 Million Dollars for Emergency Room Negligence – Forsberg v. Naidoo

by John McKiggan

Misdiagnosis Leads to Amputation

A recent ruling from the Court of Queen’s Bench in Alberta confirms that prompt diagnosis can mean the difference between life and death (or in this case, life and limb).

Alberta farmer Wayne Forsberg has been awarded 1.5 million dollars in compensation as a result of medical negligence on the part of emergency room physician Dr. Dadi Naidoo.

Patient Safety: 10 Tips to Prevent Diagnostic Errors

by John McKiggan

A diagnostic error, or misdiagnosis, happens when a doctor (or other health care professional) reaches an incorrect conclusion about what is wrong with you.

In Canada up to 7.5% of patients experience some form of diagnostic error.

Why Diagnostic Errors Happen

Doctors Trying to Protect Reputations by Limiting Patients Speech

by John McKiggan

Doctors are still doing everything they can to prevent patients from posting negative comments on doctor ratings websites like Rate MDs.

I have discussed how some doctors in the United States require patients to sign a contract agreeing not to post negative comments about the doctor online before the doctor will agree to treat the patient: Doctors Forcing Patients to Sign Gag Orders.

One doctor sued her own patient for posting a negative review of the care provided by the doctor:Doctor Sues to Silence Patient .

Doctors Warn Against Using Internet to Self-Diagnose Illness

by John McKiggan

There is an old saying that a lawyer who represents himself has a fool for a client.

But what do you call a patient who diagnoses himself? “Dangerous.” At least according to Dr. Ross Upshur, a University of Toronto scientist and Canada Research Chair in primary-care research.

Self Diagnosis Dangerous
More and more patients are turning to Google and the internet to diagnose, and even treat, their injuries and illnesses. Doctors are warning people about the dangers of relying on unproven or inaccurate information that can be found while surfing the web.

Court Refuses to Fast Track Nova Scotia Medical Malpractice Claim of Elderly Plaintiff – Langille v. Dzierzanowski

by John McKiggan

The Supreme Court of Nova Scotia just released its decision in Langille v. Dzierzanowski .

Elderly Plaintiff

The plaintiff, Walter Murray Langille, is 91 years old. He filed a medical malpractice claim against the defendants alleging they removed part of his colon because they mistakenly diagnosed him with colon cancer.

Medical Malpractice Claims can Help Lead to Better Medical care

by John McKiggan

There’s an interesting article in today’s issue of the Wall Street Journal about how medical malpractice lawsuits help provide better medical care.

According to the article:

“Medical professionals are finding lessons in these and other past malpractice cases. By analyzing the breakdowns in care that led to missed, delayed or incorrect diagnoses, insurers and health-care providers are developing programs to avert mistakes. . . . Diagnostic errors are the leading cause of malpractice suits, accounting for as many as 40% of cases and costing insurers an average of $300,000 per case to settle, studies of resolved claims show. Peter Pronovost, a patient-safety researcher at Johns Hopkins University, estimates that diagnostic errors kill 40,000 to 80,000 hospitalized patients annually, based on autopsy studies over the past four decades.”

Doctors Closer to Detecting Pre-Eclampsia Earlier

by John McKiggan

I am currently investigating a medical malpractice claim where my client suffered catastrophic injuries after developing pre-eclampsia so this story caught my eye.

CTV News has reported that an international team of doctors claim to have discovered 14 telltale metabolites that appear in the blood in early pregnancy that signal an increased risk for pre-eclampsia.

The researchers hope the discovery could one day mean a simple, cheap blood test for the life-threatening condition.

Standard of Care in Medical Malpractice Claims: Supreme Court of Canada Releases Decision

by John McKiggan

Today the Supreme Court of Canada issued a decision refusing to grant leave (permission) to hear the appeal of a case from Alberta dealing with the issue of standard of care in medical malpractice compensation claims.

The Court of Appeal decision in Nattrass v. Webber reminds us that the practice of medicine is constantly evolving and this may affect the issue of the standard of care.

Four Things You Need to Prove

Doctor Sues to Silence Patient

by John McKiggan

I read blog post today by my colleague Catherine Bertram, a medical malpractice lawyer in Washington D.C. that I thought was interesting.

Dr. Sues Her Patient

She has posted about a California physician, Dr. Kimberley Henry, who has sued one of her own patients who posted a negative review about Dr. Henry online. I wonder if Dr. Henry is opposed to online rating websites generally or just the ones that say bad things about her? Keep in mind that Dr. Henry has signed up for some of these webites and posted her profile.

Medical Malpractice Claims: Is Expert Evidence Always Necessary?

by John McKiggan

Medical Experts Required

Expert evidence is always required in medical malpractice claims to establish the standard of care and whether there was a breach of the standard of care, or at least that has assumed to be the case by medical malpractice lawyers.

In fact, I recently posted about a claim here in Nova Scotia that was dismissed because the plaintiff failed to present appropriate expert evidence.