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Surgical error threatens woman’s life after beating cancer

Beating cancer can be considered one of the greatest achievements of a patient’s life. Therefore, it’s especially tragic if another health threat occurs after the cancer is gone, especially if the threat is the result of a doctor error. Unfortunately, surgical errors happen often in Georgia and the rest of the U.S. Medical malpractice cases for doctor and hospital negligence are common for this reason.

A 45-year-old Rhode Island woman faces another fight for her life, after battling breast cancer in 2006. She had a port inserted so her chemotherapy medication could be administered directly into her bloodstream without inserting a needle every time. After beating the cancer, her port was removed.

Four years later, the woman went back to the hospital after experiencing breathing problems. A chest x-ray revealed that a small piece of the port had attached itself to the jugular vein in her neck. Doctors told her that any surgery to try and remove the piece would be risky and could cost her life. Unfortunately, leaving the piece attached to the vein could also be life-threatening.

The woman decided not to have the surgery to remove the piece of the medical device. She has filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against The Miriam Hospital. Understandably, the woman and her family now face a lot of uncertainty. With either option carrying the risk of death, she’s bound to feel fear for the rest of her life.

Accidents like this shouldn’t happen during surgery, but they often do. Patients whose lives are threatened or who have experienced a worsened medical condition from a doctor’s mistake are entitled to seek compensation for their expenses and for pain and suffering.

Source: NBC 10, “Woman sues hospital over device left in body,” Parker Gavigan, June 7, 2013

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