Medical Malpractice

WRSH partner Kathleen P. Kettles settled a case for $1,100,000 on behalf of the family of a 75-year-old woman with end-stage renal disease who was hospitalized for her condition. In the emergency department, multiple attempts were made to insert an internal jugular catheter, resulting in perforation of the carotid artery, hematoma, and respiratory compromise, leading to prolonged hospitalization and ultimately death. The difficulty in this case was that the victim was very ill to begin with and had a short life expectancy. Yet, we were able to prove that utilizing a physician who had not performed this task in six months on a thin elderly female, who made multiple attempts to insert the guide wire, was a departure from accepted practice in the insertion of venous jugular catheters and resulted in a severe injury, which caused respiratory distress from compression of the trachea from the hematoma.

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