Life Or Death Medical Errors

In the mid 70s, The California Hospital and Medical Associations commissioned a study on medical malpractice insurance. The study revealed shocking results – that one out of every twenty patients who sought treatment in hospitals were injured because of medical malpractice, and one out of every ten patients died as a result.

In the 80s, a similar study conducted in over fifty hospitals in New York by a team from Harvard revealed that of the 31,000 hospital records reviewed, nearly 8,000 – one in four patients – showed evidence of possible medical injury.

The crisis is not over. According to the Institute of Medicine, close to 100,000 people die each year from medical malpractice errors. The most common medical malpractice injuries are:

Birth Injuries

Complications in childbirth can cause injury or death to the baby, the mother, or both, especially when the attending doctor fails to deliver adequate care before or during the delivery. The inadequate care may be through failure to administer blood tests to detect abnormalities, failure to recognize the signs of fetal distress, failure to provide proper prenatal care, failure to recognize the signs of respiratory distress, failure to perform a Caesarian section where it was necessary, hastening the delivery process resulting in breech delivery and broken bones, or failure to properly care for a premature baby. The doctor’s negligence could result in the following:

o Cerebral palsy – permanent brain damage to the baby’s motor control centers in the brain, which is characterized by motor dysfunction, e.g. spasms and lack of muscular coordination
o Erb’s palsy or brachial palsy – injury to the nerves surrounding the baby’s shoulder when it is unable to come out of the birth canal (shoulder dytocia), causing arm paralysis
o Facial paralysis – injury to the baby’s facial nerve, usually caused by forcep delivery
o Clavicle fracture – when the baby’s clavicle or collarbone breaks; usually happens in breech births

Surgical Injuries

Many medical malpractice injuries happen in the operating room, usually because of poor pre-operative planning and care. This sometimes leads to irreparable or fatal consequences. Mistakes such as the improper or untimely administration of anesthesia, improper surgical technique, accidentally puncturing or cutting internal organs, operating on the wrong body part or the wrong patient, leaving surgical instruments or materials inside the body, and failing to diagnose and treat post-operative infections can result in the following:

o Asphyxia – suffocation or the loss of oxygen to body parts, caused by anesthesia errors
o Blindness
o Spinal cord injuries
o Paralysis
o Torn or punctured organs
o Hypoxic and anoxic brain injuries – partial (hypoxic) or total (anoxic) lack of oxygen in the brain
o Amputation
o Cardiovascular problems
o Coma

Infections, Septicemia and Bleeding

Sterile conditions are critical during surgeries Prostate Protocol in order to prevent infection. Failure to maintain a sterile environment in surgeries has proven to cause infections and/or bleeding, sometimes with fatal results. Infections are also known to be caused during blood transfusions, particularly when the wrong blood type is given in emergency situations. Hospitals are required by law to have infection protocols, and to monitor surgery patients to avoid infections and excessive bleeding.

Misdiagnosis or Failure to Diagnose

There are cases when a person’s life depends on what the doctor does or does not do. It is the doctor’s responsibility to find out if there is something wrong with the patient, and what that is. To this end, the doctor must order medical tests and closely review the test results to help determine the patient’s illness. Wrong diagnosis or the failure to diagnose an illness can sometimes lead to serious diseases, chronic pain, or even death. Some of the most common undiagnosed illnesses are:

o Cancer – breast cancer, lung cancer, colon cancer, prostate cancer
o brain tumors
o Ischemia – the deprivation of oxygen to parts of the body
o Pneumonia
o Mesothelioma – a type of cancer affecting the abdomen, liver or heart, caused by exposure to asbestos dust
o Asbestosis – lung disease caused by the inhalation of asbestos particles

The doctor’s negligence in examining and ordering tests to make a correct judgment on illnesses can also lead to misdiagnosis of:

o Appendicitis
o Lyme disease
o Heart disease and other cardiac problems
o Cervical cancer
o Malignant melanomas and skin cancer

Life Or Death Medical Errors – The Most Common Medical Malpractice Injuries

In the mid 70s, The California Hospital and Medical Associations commissioned a study on medical malpractice insurance. The study revealed shocking results – that one out of every twenty patients who sought treatment in hospitals were injured because of medical malpractice, and one out of every ten patients died as a result.

In the 80s, a similar study conducted in over fifty hospitals in New York by a team from Harvard revealed that of the 31,000 hospital records reviewed, nearly 8,000 – one in four patients – showed evidence of possible medical injury.

The crisis is not over. According to the Institute of Medicine, close to 100,000 people die each year from medical malpractice errors. The most common medical malpractice injuries are:

Birth Injuries

Complications in childbirth can cause injury or death to the baby, the mother, or both, especially when the attending doctor fails to deliver adequate care before or during the delivery. The inadequate care may be through failure to administer blood tests to detect abnormalities, failure to recognize the signs of fetal distress, failure to provide proper prenatal care, failure to recognize the signs of respiratory distress, failure to perform a Caesarian section where it was necessary, hastening the delivery process resulting in breech delivery and broken bones, or failure to properly care for a premature baby. The doctor’s negligence could result in the following:

o Cerebral palsy – permanent brain damage to the baby’s motor control centers in the brain, which is characterized by motor dysfunction, e.g. spasms and lack of muscular coordination
o Erb’s palsy or brachial palsy – injury to the nerves surrounding the baby’s shoulder when it is unable to come out of the birth canal (shoulder dytocia), causing arm paralysis
o Facial paralysis – injury to the baby’s facial nerve, usually caused by forcep delivery
o Clavicle fracture – when the baby’s clavicle or collarbone breaks; usually happens in breech births

Surgical Injuries

Many medical malpractice injuries happen in the operating room, usually because of poor pre-operative planning and care. This sometimes leads to irreparable or fatal consequences. Mistakes such Prostate Protocol as the improper or untimely administration of anesthesia, improper surgical technique, accidentally puncturing or cutting internal organs, operating on the wrong body part or the wrong patient, leaving surgical instruments or materials inside the body, and failing to diagnose and treat post-operative infections can result in the following:

o Asphyxia – suffocation or the loss of oxygen to body parts, caused by anesthesia errors
o Blindness
o Spinal cord injuries
o Paralysis
o Torn or punctured organs
o Hypoxic and anoxic brain injuries – partial (hypoxic) or total (anoxic) lack of oxygen in the brain
o Amputation
o Cardiovascular problems
o Coma

Infections, Septicemia and Bleeding

The Importance of Acid, Alkaline and PH in Relation to Your Health

Often times you hear the words alkaline, acid or ph thrown out as they relate to health or nutrition. Who really understands these terms? If you were to be held at gunpoint and told to give the definition of acid, alkaline or ph could you confidently do it? If you were a chemist or botanist then you would have the pleasure of comprehending these commonly used terms. These terms may sound very basic to the ear but they hold extreme value in the area of nutrition.

1. Acid – As it relates to chemistry is any substance that produces positive ions or accepts electrons from a base substance to form covalent bonds. Still sounds foreign right? A better way to help you comprehend the meaning of acids would be to address food items that contain acid or that are acid forming. A common acidic food item would be soda pop. It contains carbonic acid. For this reason it is considered to be “a carbonated drink.” If you know anything about home remedies then you know that soda pop can be used to unclog stuffed toilets and remove Acidaburn rust from a car battery. If carbonic acid can perform these tasks then it is safe to say that it can cause some level of damage to your internal organs. Meat is also acid forming and causes a calcium deficiency. Wherever there is acid present in the human body there must be calcium to help digest or breakdown the acid. As it relates to your health, acid is the bad guy.

2. Alkaline – If I had a dollar for the amount of times that I heard someone say alkaline or alkaline water I would be rich. Alkaline comes from the Arabic word alkali. Alkaline can be defined as a base substance that rates higher than a seven on the ph scale. In the world of health people strive to be more alkaline than acidic.

3. Ph – Acid and alkaline are measured on a scale known as PH or potential hydrogen. Ph is nothing more than a plant’s ability to attract hydrogen ions. Plants need hydrogen to function. If a plant does not have hydrogen then it will not survive. Ph’s involvement with plants is focusing on the relationship between the soil and water. If the environment is too acidic then the plant will not thrive. On the other hand, if the environment is saturated with hydrogen then the plant will still not thrive. The ideal score for a plant’s environment or a human body on the ph scale is a seven.

Acid Reflux Syndrome – Giving Your Discomfort a Name

Acid reflux occurs when the acid content in your stomach flow back up to the esophagus. This can be rather painful and cause the lower part of your esophagus to become inflamed. Your doctor may call it Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD), but most of us call it acid reflux, reflux or heartburn.

Heartburn and Other Symptoms

Heartburn, the primary acid reflux syndrome symptom, can spread to your jaw, neck, arms or back. You may also have difficulty swallowing, spitting and vomiting. You might also experience cramping, hoarseness, sore throat, pain below your breastbone, salivating more than usual, coughing or shortness of breath. You could even find that hearburn causes bad breath. Usually, acid reflux syndrome symptoms appear when you lie down after eating. You may find that simply sitting up relieves the acid reflux syndrome symptoms.

Frequent occurrences of acid reflux can threaten your health. Recurrence can lead to reflux esophagitis, narrowing of the esophagus or esophageal ulcer. Acid reflux syndrome can even lead to Barrett’s syndrome, a change in your esophageal lining that can develop into esophageal cancer.

Foods and Medications that CauseAcid Reflux Syndrome Symptoms

Acid reflux occurs when your lower esophageal sphincter (LES) functions poorly. Normally this sphincter remains tightly caused. However, it may malfunction and open when it should not under certain circumstances. For instance, the esophageal sphincter may open after you eat a heavy meal or if you lie down soon after you eat anything.

Greasy foods, peppermint and chocolateAcidaburn can relax the lower esophageal sphinter and increase your odds of reflux. Alcohol, caffeine and nicotine can also aggravate acid reflux syndrome. Certain drugs such as calcium channel blockers, meperidine, diazepam, prostaglandins, morphine and nitrate heart medication may also cause the LES to open.

Who is Affected by Acid Reflux Syndrome

Anyone can experience acid reflux. However, you are more likely to be affected by acid reflux syndrome if you are overweight or if you suffer from hiatal hernia or scleroderma (hardening of the skin and connective tissue). Women reportedly have a higher occurrence of acid reflux during pregnancy.

Medical Diagnostics

Diagnostic examinations for acid reflux syndrome include x-rays. Your physician may perform a closer examination known as an esophagoscopy. This is done by inserting a flexible viewing tube into your esophagus. A biopsy may also be taken during an esophagoscopy. An esophageal manometry can measure pressure in your lower esophageal sphincter or the Bernstein test measures how much acid is in your esophagus.

An Array of Acid Reflux Syndrome Treatment Options

A recommended treatment for your acid reflux syndrome could be elevating the head of your bed. Doing so keeps the stomach acid from flowing into your esophagus while you are asleep. As already mentioned, you should avoid fatty foods, coffee and alcohol because they aggravate acid reflux.

If these remedies fail to provide relief, you may try taking antacids after eating and again at bedtime. More aggressive medications include histamine receptor blockers (for reduce stomach acids), prokinetic or motily drugs (for making the LES to close more tightly), proton-pump inhibitors, and omepraxole or lansoprazole (for healing esophageal inflammation).