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

October 2012 Archives

US meningitis death toll rises to 28

Two more patients dead in Michigan and one more in Tennessee bring the death toll from fungal meningitis to 28. 363 have been sickened because of the outbreak; there are 356 total cases of fungal meningitis and seven being blamed on peripheral joint infections. Fungal meningitis is being linked to tainted vials that were shipped to 23 states by a compounding pharmacy out of Framingham, Massachusetts. Of the 23 states that received bad batches of steroids, only four haven't reported any cases.

Minnesota records 10th fungal meningitis case

A woman who received an injection of steroids is now being treated for fungal meningitis. The 60-year-old woman who got the injection at Medical Advanced Pain Specialists is the 10th case in the state of Minnesota to develop fungal meningitis. Medical Advance Pain Specialists is one of two offices to confirm receiving shipments of the steroids from the New England Compounding Center.

Meningitis outbreak spreads to 19 states with case in Rhode Island

The current outbreak of fungal meningitis has reached its 19th state. The first case in the state of Rhode Island has been reported. Out of the 23 states who received shipments of steroids from the New England Compounding Center, only four have yet to report an actual case of fungal meningitis. The deadly fungal meningitis is being linked to contaminated steroids that were shipped from the New England Compounding Center, located in Framingham, Massachusetts. Three lots of methylprednisolone acetate, tainted by a fungus were distributed throughout the United States and patients are developing fungal meningitis.

Nursing home resident dies after given wrong medication

A lawsuit has been filed in Beaver County Court concerning the death of a 40-year old man in a nursing home. The deceased man was described as a "severely mentally disabled" individual that was in need of an in-patient facility to which he was involuntarily committed.

The issue of conducting Cesarean sections

Doctors are under incredible pressure when it comes to the delivery of children. Doctors often remain uncertain as to whether a Cesarean section should or should not be performed until it is too late and birth injuries or cerebral palsy results.

Investigation of Potential Hepatitis C Exposure Associated with Hays Medical Center

The Hays Medical Center, associated with the potential exposure of the hepatitis c virus, is under investigation. As of October of 2012, 474 patients have potentially been exposed, 416 are available for testing and 391 have submitted specimens. 374 patients have had negative results of hepatitis c and there are 6 people with the infection genetically closely related to the current outbreak. The investigation is still ongoing.

State officials close another pharmacy since fungal meningitis outbreak

The current outbreak of fungal meningitis has killed 25 and sickened 344. After a surprise inspection, a specialty compounding pharmacy in Massachusetts has closed because of concerns with sterility. Infusion Resource has closed because of unsanitary conditions. They prepare sterile, injectable medications for patients and were caught administering injections which they were not licensed to do. Infusion Resource voluntarily surrendered their pharmacy license. The Executive Director said they will work on making the environment sterile and fixing things like a broken window to ensure the safety of the drugs.

Former Pennsylvania university employee files asbestos lawsuit

A longtime employee of a private Pennsylvania university has filed a federal lawsuit against 30 companies, alleging that they caused him to be exposed to asbestos in the course of his employment. As such, he claims, those companies are responsible for his eventual asbestos-related disease diagnosis. The university is not named in the lawsuit, with the man focusing solely on the companies that he claims mined, processed, manufactured, imported and sold the asbestos products to which he was exposed.

CDC: 11 more cases tied to fungal meningitis outbreak

The cases of fungal meningitis from the current outbreak continue to rise. It has risen by 11 making the total number of cases 328. Five of the cases are related to peripheral joint infections. Fungal meningitis is being linked to the contaminated vials of methylprednisolone acetate that was shipped out by the compounding pharmacy out of Framingham, Massachusetts, the New England Compounding Center. The company has since shut down production and recalled all of its products while under investigation.

Fungal meningitis update: 3 more cases, 1 in Marion

A 50-year-old man confirmed having gotten fungal meningitis after receiving a contaminated injected steroid from Marion County Pain Management Center in Florida. The Florida Health Department reported that three more cases, the 50-year-old man and two others from Escambia County, of fungal meningitis were confirmed. 1,038 patients in Florida were notified to get checked after receiving an injection of methylprednisolone acetate.

Children are swallowing laundry detergent pods

When it comes to children safety, product warnings are not likely going to be sufficient to prevent children from using the product incorrectly. For example, incidents related to children swallowing detergent pods have been cropping up in Pennsylvania and across America. Many such incidents are resulting in children requiring medical care and possibly hospitalization.

Nurse burnout leads to more patient infection

It shouldn't surprise anyone that overworked medical staff will also be guilty of more medical errors. This finding has recently been verified by a University of Pennsylvania study that shows more catheter-associated urinary tract infections and more surgical site infections occur in hospitals where there is a greater prevalence of nurse burnout.

Fungal Meningitis Outbreak Hits Georgia

The current outbreak of fungal meningitis that is linked to contaminated steroids has now reached the 17th state, Georgia. The Centers for Disease Control and Protection reported the outbreak has spread to there. Three lots of tainted vials of methylprednisolone acetate, steroids given for pain, were distributed to 23 states. It is believed that about 14,000 patients were given the shots at various clinics and offices. It has caused the death of 24 victims and has sickened over 300 people.

Fungal meningitis outbreak claims 24th victim

The 24th person has died from the current outbreak of fungal meningitis. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported a resident of Indiana was exposed to the contaminated vials that are linked to fungal meningitis. The New England Compounding Center, responsible for the tainted vials of methylprednisolone acetate, have recalled all of their products and quit production while being investigated. It is unknown how the fungus got into the vials.

One more dies, nine more sickened in fungal meningitis outbreak

Nine more people have become sickened by the current outbreak of fungal meningitis that is being linked to tainted steroids. The steroids, methylprednisolone acetate, were made and shipped from a pharmacy in Framingham, Massachusetts, the New England Compounding Center. They are responsible for three lots of the vials and have recalled all of their products and shut down production for the time being. Around 17,000 vials were shipped out and they believe that around 14,000 patients were exposed to the fungal meningitis. 23 states have confirmed receiving shipments from the company, over 300 have been sickened and more than 20 people have died because of fungal meningitis.

Fungal meningitis risk greatest first six weeks after shots, CDC says

The Center for Disease Control and Protection has reported that patients are at a higher risk for fungal meningitis six weeks, 42 days, after the injection. After that, the risk of fungal meningitis decreases, but patients should still be cautious if they have symptoms. Fungal meningitis is currently being linked to contaminated vials of methylprednisolone acetate, steroids for pain. The steroids were made and distributed by the Framingham, Massachusetts pharmacy, the New England Compounding Center. They have recalled all of their products out and have put a halt to production while under heavy investigation.

First case of fungal meningitis related to multistate outbreak reported in SC

The first case of fungal meningitis in the state of South Carolina has been reported. Although this is the first case in South Carolina it brings the total number of cases to 317 and 24 deaths. Around 14,000 people in 23 states have been exposed to the contaminated vials of methylprednisolone acetate that were distributed by the New England Compounding Center in Framingham, Massachusetts. The company has recalled all of its products and has stopped production while under investigation.

Repairman crushed to death by construction equipment

A repairman attempting to make repairs to a backhoe was suddenly killed when the construction vehicle rolled and subsequently crushed him beneath it. A similar type of accident happened in the same area on September 4th when a worker was crushed to death by a concrete barrier.

Study attempts to determine causes of elderly slips and falls

If you are one of the many Pittsburgh residents who are caring for an elderly parent, you are probably familiar with the constant fear that your loved one will suffer an accidental fall and seriously injure him- or herself. That fear would not be unfounded - scientific data indicates that accidental falls are one of the leading causes of injury and death in people over the age of 65 in the U.S. and around the world.

Asbestos producers resort to bankruptcy courts

Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania. A trust fund has been set up by the court concerning the settlement of asbestos-related lawsuits involving companies going through Chapter 11 Bankruptcy reorganization.

Lyme disease reported on the rise in Pennsylvania

Though reports of Lyme disease are up in the Pennsylvania area, this disease is unfortunately often misdiagnosed. As occurs with almost any failure to diagnose a medical problem, an illness like Lyme disease will only fester and worsen if it remains untreated.

Pennsylvania jury awards $3.2 million in wrongful death case

A woman from Canonsburg just outside of the Pittsburgh area was awarded a $3.2 million verdict by a jury following the death of her husband. Her husband was killed in an accident when mining equipment fell from a tractor-trailer while being transported and struck her husband's pickup truck.

Pa. reports first meningitis case, from Altoona

Recently, the first case of fungal meningitis was reported in Pennsylvania. In Altoona, PA a patient as seen at a pain clinic for back pain and was given an injected steroid. They went into the hospital because of an unknown serious illness and they believe it to be connected to the fungal meningitis outbreak.

Pennsylvania pregnant woman dies due to delay in care

A 24-year old pregnant woman in Pennsylvania recently died while under the care of medics. It is claimed that the woman, who was in the 37th week of her pregnancy, fell down some stairs. After a 911 call was made, delays and mistakes made in treating the woman may have resulted in oxygen deprivation and her not receiving the care that she needed.

Meningitis Outbreak Update: Seven Deaths Reported, New England Compounding Center Pulls Drugs

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that the number of deaths from an outbreak of fungal meningitis has risen to seven. The meningitis is being linked to contaminated steroid injections. The number of cases and states has risen to 64 people in nine states, which is 17 more people and two more states within one day.

Working conditions blamed for worker's cancer

A workers' compensation claim had been filed by a steel worker against Severstal Wheeling, Inc. (formerly Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel Corp.). It is purported that the worker contracted bladder cancer while working for his employer, and the workers' compensation claim for this individual has since been upheld.

Lack of transparency leads to more medical mistakes

A Pennsylvania hospital now provides doctors' notes online for their patients. The idea behind providing such notes is for patients to better understand the manner in which their doctors are treating them.

Lack of funds delays project on ill effects of drilling

A well-formulated and much-advertised plan by two Pennsylvania-based health companies to study the results of gas drilling is still in the initial stages as the companies look for grants to aid their project. A second group that has been looking for comparable solutions is focusing on the quality of the air, as the workers who have complained of health problems related to drilling will not answer questions about those problems.

Pennsylvania manufacturer seeks to create asbestos trust fund

Individuals who acquire mesothelioma, asbestosis or other illnesses as a result of exposure to asbestos fibers may be entitled recover financial compensation for the injuries they have suffered. Liability can lie with a number of different parties, including with the manufacturers of asbestos-containing products.

Meningitis Outbreak Prompts Warnings, Recalls Right Here in Pittsburgh

With the current outbreak of meningitis, more than 17,000 vials, which have been linked to 35 cases, five fatal, were sent out to offices and clinics in 23 different states. The Massachusetts pharmacy, New England Compounding Center, that made the vials is recalling all of its products nationwide. The amount of unused vials is currently unknown. The shipments of the vials were sent out between July and September.

Asbestos and other contaminants found in drinking water

It seems that certain communities have not shown a great deal of concern as to what's been dumped into our water supply - and particularly the water from which we drink. Local experts from one Pennsylvania community listed the following ingredients contained in their drinking water: lead, copper, chlorine, radon, haloacetic acid, and other contaminants including asbestos.

Simple steps by medical staff can avoid medication errors

The Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority voiced concerns about medical mistakes that only come to the attention of doctors after it is too late. Specifically, medication errors are one of the chief complaints when it comes to doctor' errors and medical mistakes.

CBMC Files a second lawsuit against UPMC Presby, Maxim Staffing Solutions, Inc. and Medical Solutions, LLC for Hepatitis C

Today we filed a second lawsuit on behalf of two plaintiffs against UPMC Presbyterian, Maxim Staffing Solutions, Inc., and Medical Solutions, LLC, for medical negligence in the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County.  The plaintiffs in this case, Thomas D. Walters and Clara M. Walters, allege that Thomas was infected with Hepatitis C while he was being treated atHays Medical Center in Hays, Kansas, by a dirty needle used by David Kwiatkowski.

Fraternity, college and liquor store named in wrongful death suit

The parents of a Pennsylvania university student have filed a wrongful death lawsuit on his behalf. At least one of the defendants in the wrongful death suit involves a fraternity that is blamed for the young man's death.

Delay in diagnosis led to the need for additional surgeries

A female patient goes to the emergency room for abdomen discomfort, but she is not actually treated until the following day. It is apparent that treating physicians either misdiagnosed the significance of her problem or failed to diagnose here symptoms altogether.

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Caroselli, Beachler & Coleman, L.L.C.
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Pittsburgh, PA 15222

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