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Medication allergy spurs brain damage, medical malpractice claim

North Carolina patients may consider consulting with multiple doctors in order to get the most accurate diagnosis of their medical condition. At some point, patients believe that the multiple opinions increase their chances of finding a positive resolution to their ailment. Unfortunately, one woman is now permanently disabled due to doctor error at three different hospitals.

A 45-year-old woman, who is the mother of two children, was experiencing seizures and received treatment and consultation at three hospitals. However, the anti-seizure medication she was prescribed caused severe allergic reactions, including permanent organ and brain damage.

After receiving the medication, the woman's face and throat began to swell uncontrollably. Unfortunately, she was eventually diagnosed with Stevens-Johnson syndrome, a potentially fatal skin condition that can lead to organ failure. As a result of her reaction, the woman experienced neurological damage that has left her incapacitated for the rest of her life.

In a decisive action to seek justice, the woman filed claims against her medical providers and the three hospitals she visited. The jury came back in her favor and returned one of the largest compensation packages in the history of her state's court system: nearly $120 million. Part of the award includes $10 million in lost wages, since she is no longer to perform her job as a claims adjuster.

Despite the ruling, officials plan to appeal the decision. They indicate that the ruling does not align with the facts of the case and state laws regarding medical liability.

Whenever medical professionals make preventable mistakes, patients are equipped with rights to pursue justice for the damage inflicted. Oftentimes, a medical mistake can lead to a lifetime of unnecessary, expensive medical bills. Anyone who has suffered at the hands of a negligent medical provider should know that they are not alone and they can find some relief in the midst of their difficult circumstances.

Source: Clinical Advisor, "NY patient awarded $120 million in malpractice lawsuit," Ann W. Latner, June 18, 2012

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