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Greenville NC Medical Malpractice Law Blog

Lab errors might be prevented using costly DNA technology

Lab tests often play a central role in what diagnosis a patient receives. These tests must be tracked and performed appropriately so that the doctors get proper information upon which to make a correct diagnosis. When the lab tests come back with incorrect information, the patients can suffer greatly.

It has recently come to light that labs often misdiagnose cancer in biopsies. No matter which way the error falls, the patient is going to be negatively impacted. A false positive could lead to unnecessary treatments and mental anguish. A false negative could lead to curable cancer advancing to a terminal state.

Patients should vet their doctors before seeing them

Did you know that between 2013 and 2015, there have been around 300 physician assistants and doctors in North Carolina that have faced some sort of disciplinary action by the state medical board?

The most common issues dealt with the health of patients, such as not meeting the accepted standard of care and unprofessional conduct. Other issues involve problems with communicating with patients, prescription medications and medical records. Criminal matters only make up a small portion of the cases the medical board reviews.

Study shows that disruption of brain's network affects function

A new study published in PLOS Computational Biology could help doctors understand why some injuries to the brain are so much worse than others.

Where the injury to the brain is located determines the range of responses. This is not a new belief. However, it appears that while each part of the brain has a specific role, that part does not work on its own. Instead, the brain works through connections or as a network. For doctors, this means that they must not just look for the changes that come when a specific part of the brain is injured, but changes that happen depending on where the network is disrupted.

What causes cerebral palsy?

Most people are familiar with cerebral palsy only in the abstract -- they don't realize that it is the result of a birth injury rather than something genetic.

Cerebral palsy is only one of the birth injuries that can ultimately result from the underlying problem -- hypoxia. Hypoxia is simply a term used to describe any situation that causes a baby to receive inadequate oxygen somewhere around the time of birth. The lack of oxygen causes fragile brain cells to die, ultimately resulting in cerebral palsy or other disorders. Other disorders include things like seizure disorders and impaired cognitive functioning in general. Hypoxia is also responsible for as many as 1/3 of all newborn deaths.

Who pays the bills when insurance doesn't?

Having a baby is expensive. Even when there are no complications and medical insurance is in effect, there are still usually thousands of dollars to be paid. What happens, though, when pregnancy complications and birth injuries ring up a hospital bill of $173,000?

For one veteran and his wife, it meant considering filing bankruptcy. Before the baby was even born, the parents had to pay for hundreds of dollars of medication to prevent a miscarriage. Then their baby girl was born four weeks early and the mother suffered complications after having a c-section.

Can you trust doctors' testimonies in malpractice cases?

In medical malpractice cases, doctors' testimonies typically carry significant weight in court. After all, they are the ones with years of study and experience in the medical field. But can you really trust their words?

The following story may give you pause.

What are some early signs of birth complicataions?

Many of the signs of birth complications aren't really unusual for a pregnant woman to have. In fact, many of these signs can be easily overlooked because they can appear at any time during the pregnancy.

However, some of these signs can indicate potentially serious complications, so it is very important that a pregnant woman speak to her health care provider about them. He or she is in the best position to evaluate the sign and determine if there is something wrong or if further evaluation is needed.

Gestational diabetes can be a threat to your child's health

Although the birth of a child is a gift, there is always a risk of complications that could put the child or mother's life at risk. One of those possible complications is gestational diabetes.

Most obstetric and gynecological doctors and surgeons are well-aware of the dangers of gestational diabetes and its prevalence among pregnant women. For that reason, it is important for your doctor to perform blood work and see you for regular checkups throughout your pregnancy.

Report: Lithium may be treatment for traumatic brain injury

The Food and Drug Administration approved lithium salts to treat depression and mania. In fact, it was the first drug approved to do so. Now, according to a new study by Rutgers University, lithium may help prevent nerve cells from dying and preserve brain function in people who have suffered a traumatic brain injury.

The study was published in Scientific Reports. The scientists found that lithium and rapamycin protected nerve cells in the brain. In addition, it stopped further brain cell damage by stopping a chemical known as glutamate from sending signals to other cells. Rapamycin has been used as a treatment for some types of cancer.

Cervical cancer: Early detection is the key to survival

Cervical cancer is a potentially life-threatening illness, but it is highly preventable and very treatable in its early stages. Cervical cancer develops in the cervix, which is a section of the uterus. It's caused by human papillomavirus, HPV, which comes in over 100 strains.

There are around 30 forms that can cause cancer. You typically get the virus through sexual contact with a partner. Some people have no symptoms, while others develop genital warts as a response to the virus.

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