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October 2013 Archives

Patient scorched with liposuction laser

North Carolina moms who are considering having a laser liposuction procedure might want to rethink their decision after they hear about how one mother's procedure turned out. A 26-year-old mother from the Bronx ended up severely scarred and deformed after the OB/GYN scorched her with the laser during the procedure. After the incident occurred, the OB/GYN allegedly tried to prevent the woman from going to the hospital to receive treatment for the burns.

Can doctor error still be to blame in robot surgery mishaps?

North Carolina hospitals may join the ranks of facilities offering robot-assisted surgery, but one doctor in Colorado stood accused of promoting the futuristic option to the exclusion of other, possibly safer, methods. Medical malpractice suits could arise from the 10 patients treated by that surgeon using the robotic method between 2008 and 2011. An April 2013 complaint made by the Colorado Medical Board stated that five patients suffered punctured or torn arteries, two had objects temporarily left inside them after surgery and others suffered nerve damage. One patient died and another required cardiopulmonary resuscitation, according to the complaint, which charged the Denver doctor with 14 counts of unprofessional conduct. Included were allegations that he sometimes did not advise patients on alternatives to robotic surgery.

Correlation found between brain damage and long ICU stays

North Carolina readers may be interested to know that a study at Vanderbilt University seems to indicate that long-term stays in the ICU can cause a loss of cognitive function that can last for up to a year after a patient's release. The results of the study, which were published in the New England Journal of Medicine, showed evidence that more than 30 percent of patients suffer from mental deficits that are similar to a moderate traumatic brain injury. It also indicated that another quarter of patients have issues that are similar to the beginning stages of Alzheimer's disease. The results of this study may lead to techniques that yield better outcomes and cut down on the number of medical malpractice cases.

Luxury over patient care: a new trend in hospitals

North Carolina patients may have noticed that some hospitals have made some major investments recently. The lobbies may be nicer, or they may even feature nail salons and flat-screen televisions. The one thing that hospitals are not making major investments in, however, is patient safety.

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