Caroselli, Beachler & Coleman, L.L.C.

Young boy suffers brain damage during surgery

Brain injury is tragic for Pittsburgh residents in almost every circumstance. It is especially tragic when the victim of such a brain injury also happens to be a young child.

A jury in another locality just returned a $24.2 million verdict against a hospital on behalf of the mother of a 3-year old brain injured boy. While the boy was being operated upon for a congenital heart defect, an infusion pump malfunctioned and caused a substance called epinephrine to be injected into the boy. Epinephrine is known as an adrenaline drug, and the release of adrenaline into the young boy's system caused a cardiac arrest ultimately resulting in brain damage.

There are often side issues in medical malpractice cases. Here, there is a question as to whether the pump involved was also defective. And though such manufacturers deserve a share of the blame, this does not let doctors and medical providers off of the hook for allowing such a mistake to happen.

The manufacturers of the pump settled with the family for an undisclosed amount of money. As these companies were also determined to be at fault for what happened to the child, it's possible that the amount of fault will be deducted from that verdict.

Attorneys should be versed in many areas of law to take on such a lawsuit. Without knowledge in other fields, it may be difficult to convince a jury of everything that occurred while the boy was in surgery.

The brain injury like the boy suffered will probably involve a lifetime of care. This will include medical care, rehabilitation and the performance of other services to help the boy from day to day. Because it's difficult to know exactly how much such services will cost, juries understandably will return large verdicts in these kind of cases

Source: The Times-Picayune, "Jefferson Parish jury awards $24 million in medical malpractice case," by Paul Purpura, August 14, 2012

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Caroselli, Beachler & Coleman, L.L.C.
20 Stanwix Street, Seventh Floor
Pittsburgh, PA 15222

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