Personal Injury News & Developments

Failing to Control Surgical BleedingAdvocate Health and Hospitals is under fire after numerous negligent actions lead to the death of a patient on January 30, 2014. Among the claims made by the executor of the deceased’s estate are that the doctors in charge of the victim’s care misdiagnosed her condition, performed an unnecessary surgical procedure and failed to detect internal bleeding during and immediately following the operation. Whenever medical errors result in bodily injury or the death of a patient, the doctors performing the procedure and the facility where the procedure took place can be held liable for damages in the amount of the cost of additional medical care or for wrongful death.

Lawsuit Alleges Malpractice and Negligence

Herlinda Rodriquez was under the care of Doctors George Bovis and John Ruge from January 19, 2014 until her death on January 30. She had been admitted for a spinal procedure that Juan Rodriquez claims was inappropriate and unneeded. It is his claim that Herlinda was misdiagnosed and never required the procedure, and that the doctors performing the procedure did not take the steps needed to stop the internal bleeding that would eventually claim her life. Juan filed a lawsuit against both doctors, Advocate Health and Hospitals and Advocate Medical Group on February 1, 2016.

Not Identifying a Stroke Can Lead to MalpracticeA Cook County woman has filed a lawsuit against her medical care provider after the misdiagnosis of her stroke led to permanent injuries. The lawsuit, filed on February 1, 2016, alleges that the plaintiff suffered physical and financial damages when her doctor misread a CT scan and delayed the treatment of her stroke. The defendants in the case are her doctor— Alejandra Campos and Pro Care Medical Center, which provided the plaintiff’s care. Yesenia Carrizosa, the plaintiff, is seeking over $50,000 in the lawsuit as well as additional damages to cover the cost of her legal representation.

Time is Critical in the Treatment of Stroke

A stroke occurs when the supply of oxygen to the brain is limited either due to a blood clot that has formed in a major artery or a hemorrhage that has resulted in massive internal bleeding within the brain. Early diagnosis and treatment is critical to ensuring the most positive prognosis for the patient and delaying treatment can result in permanent physical and mental impairment. When doctors suspect that a patient is suffering from a stroke, they will order imagine scans such as a CT scan to determine whether there is evidence of swelling or a blood clot within the brain.

Self Driving Cars and SafetyA proposal by the Obama administration opens up the possibility of government funding into research that will eventually lead to the development of a self-driving vehicle. If the administration has its way, $4 billion in funding will be committed over a ten year period in the hopes that an autonomous vehicle will greatly reduce the number of fatal accidents experienced each year. In recent history, technology has become a source of distraction and led to an increase in auto related fatalities despite more advanced safety technologies. Self-driving vehicles could be the solution to this dilemma, as they would allow drivers to multitask without placing themselves and others at risk.

Proposal Includes Updates to Infrastructure

Investing in technology connected roads is critical to the invention of an autonomous vehicle and President Obama has addressed this need in his 2017 budget proposal, which will commit funds to the development of vehicle technology as well as roadways that are compatible with the new vehicles. Automakers are already in a race to develop the first self-driving vehicle, but this proposal will clear financial obstacles standing in their way by allotting exemptions for up to 2,500 test vehicles to be used in real on-road tests.

The Risks of Baby PowderThe global leader of consumer personal hygiene products Johnson & Johnson has just suffered one more very costly lawsuit in federal court. In May 2016, for the second time in less than three months, a St. Louis jury awarded a South Dakota woman $55 million after agreeing with the plaintiff that Johnson & Johnson’s baby powder and other talcum-based personal hygiene products directly caused her ovarian cancer. While the connection between cancer and talcum powder might be an unexpected surprise to many consumers, it could be that manufacturers have known of the product’s hidden risks for decades.

A quick dusting of talcum powder is a common use for many of Johnson & Johnson’s talcum base products including Shower to Shower, Baby Powder and others. Many consumers use the products to reduce diaper irritation and rashes in infants and as a quick moisture absorbing solution around adult genital areas. However, these uses might be dangerous.

Recent findings reported by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) and the American Cancer Society are noting a connection between inhaling significant amounts of the talc powder to chronic and acute lung irritation, naming the condition “talcosis.” Many wise consumers have begun using cornstarch powder as a reliable, safe alternative to avoid direct contact with potentially harmful elements that make up the natural occurring talc mineral including magnesium, silicon and oxygen.

Risks of Baby PowderNo parent would ever consider using a product on the skin of their newborn or infant if the ingredients were considered to be dangerous or hazardous to their health. That is why many of us believe baby powder and other talcum-based products have to be safe to use. After all, these products have been a part of our hygiene maintenance routine forever. If there had ever been problems with talc-based products, we surely would have heard about the problem by now, right?

Sadly, the dangers of baby powder have been known by product manufacturers for decades. However, it likely took the two 2016 verdicts from St. Louis, Missouri jurors awarding plaintiffs more than $127 million because there is a connection between talcum products and ovarian cancer to make consumers aware of the serious problem.

The massive plaintiff financial awards of two successful lawsuits have only recently magnified the life-threatening problem that has been causing serious health issues in women for decades. After much research, there appears to be a connection with women routinely using talcum powder in their genital areas and the development of ovarian cancer.

Ovarian Cancer Lawsuit Lost by Johnson & JohnsonIn May 2016, a St. Louis Missouri jury ordered consumer product, pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson (J & J) to pay $55 million over a claim that talcum powder sold under the company name caused ovarian cancer. Jurors deliberated more than eight hours before agreeing with a South Dakota female plaintiff that her ovarian cancer was caused by years of using talcum powder that was sold under the J & J brand and others. The New Jersey-based consumer product giant announced it will appeal the ruling.

This is the second time in less than three months that Johnson & Johnson has been ordered to pay plaintiffs a huge award by a St. Louis jury to cover claims that its product causes cancer. In February 2016, jurors awarded more than $72 million to a 62-year-old Alabama woman’s surviving family members, who has since passed away in October 2015 from ovarian cancer. Both cases involved evidence that using Johnson & Johnson talcum products including baby powder caused cancer.

The Latest Ruling

Preventing Falls is Mandatory to Decrease NegligenceManor Care has been at the center of controversy in recent history, as numerous patients come forward with claims due to negligent or neglectful care. The latest complaint has come in the form of a lawsuit filed on February 3, 2016 by the daughter of a patient who suffered severe injuries while under the care of the chain’s Kankakee center. Included in the allegations is the assertion that the nursing home violated the Nursing Home Care Act, which protects the rights of all patients under the care of professional caregivers and that the negligent actions of the center’s staff were the cause of the plaintiff’s mother’s death.

Multiple Falls Cited in Claim

Colleen Bennett claims that her mother, Mary Parejko fell on numerous occasions while under the supervision of Manor Care staff and that her injuries leading up to her death were the direct result of negligence and abuse. Mary suffered wrist and hip fractures in addition to numerous falls over the course of her stay and her daughter claims that the deterioration in her physical and mental condition is directly attributed to the many injuries that she endured while under the facility’s care. She is seeking compensation for the cost of medical treatment as well as for the unwarranted pain and suffering that her mother needed to endure in the months leading to her untimely death at the age of 69.

Accident Frequency in Chicago Hurts AllstateAllstate is being squeezed by rising accident rates and more severe auto related injuries throughout the Chicago area. In Chicago alone, 130 vehicular fatalities were reported and the average number of accidents reported across Illinois each day has risen to almost 800. The Chicago car accident attorneys of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers have noticed a corresponding increase in the number of cases we’ve taken on as a result and are concerned by current statistical trends. In addition to costing victims more money for expensive medical care, the increased accident rates are forcing insurance companies like Allstate to make adjustments to their business models to remain profitable.

Falling Gas Prices Reflect Rising Death Rates

Gas prices have plummeted over the last few years, prompting more people to purchase vehicles and to drive more frequently. This is one of the contributing factors to the increase in accidents over this time period, but other factors have equal weight. New technologies provide additional distractions to drivers and when combined with increased traffic volume, create a recipe for more accidents and more severe injuries.

Warnings on Birth Control DeviceWomen looking for a simple alternative to traditional methods of sterilization have turned to the Essure Permanent Birth Control System, which is marketed and sold by Bayer. The contraceptive device was originally developed by Conceptus Inc. and approved in 2002. Bayer purchased Conceptus and the rights to the Essure System in 2013 and is now under fire for numerous complications that women using the system have suffered. These complications are so severe that the FDA has implemented a black box warning for the devices— which requires patients to sign a waiver stating that they have been notified of the risks associated with the devices prior to use.

How the Essure System Works

The Essure Permanent Birth Control System is a non-hormonal birth control method that prevents pregnancy through sterilization. Two flexible coils are inserted into the fallopian and over time, scar tissue develops around the coils and causes permanent infertility by creating a barrier that prevents eggs from reaching the uterus. The simple outpatient procedure has made the system an attractive alternative to tubal litigation and the devices can be inserted without any need for anesthesia.

Crane Accidents and Crane SafetyNew crane safety regulations are now in place for New York City following a tragic crane collapse on February 7th that took the life of an unsuspecting victim who had been on his way to work and injured three others. The accident that resulted in his death is thought to be directly linked to high winds, and the crane collapsed as workers were in the process of securing the crane and diverting traffic. Precautionary measures proved futile as the crew was unable to prevent the crane from falling onto the street below. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio responded by tightening regulations and increasing the amounts of fines to be assessed against offenders.

New Prevention Measures in Place

The new regulations now require all crane engineers to pull their cranes down the day before any forecasts that call for winds in excess of 20 mph and all operations must be halted at once any time unexpected wind gusts exceed the same speed. Other precautionary measures include closing off walkways and streets in areas that crane activity poses a threat to in the event of a collapse in order to reduce the chances that a pedestrian or motorist will be involved in any accident that results.