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Lawsuit: disability was price paid for failure to insert stent

The current debate over health care focuses on the increasing costs of medical treatment and insurance. The Affordable Care Act recently went into effect, specifically addressing the issue of health insurance. For one Louisiana resident, it wasn't his insurance policy that dictated the price he would pay for his care.

During the fall of 2009, the man began experiencing pain in his chest and numbness in his fingers and palms. These symptoms prompted him to visit his physician. After undergoing tests, the physician determined that there were problems in his heart, including two arterial blockages.

A heart catheterization procedure was scheduled for Nov. 6, and it was the decisions made during this procedure that would cause irreparable damage.

Prior to the procedure, the patient had provided the surgeon with the consent necessary to insert stents that would open up the affected arteries. Although the procedure itself was complication-free, the complaint alleges that the doctor chose to forgo placing the cardiac stents that tests had showed were necessary in his case.

It took just over two weeks after the patient was discharged for him to suffer a heart attack. This time, he was rushed to the emergency department, and this time, a stent was inserted. The only problem was that the damage had already been done.

When the patient woke up from this second procedure, he was told that he had suffered disabling injuries. According to the complaint, these injuries not only could have been, but should have been avoided by simply addressing the issue during the Nov. 6 procedure.

When negligent care leads to patient injuries, a New Orleans attorney can help the victim seek compensation through a medical malpractice claim.

Source: The Louisiana Record, "Medical malpractice claim filed by man who suffered heart attack," Kyle Barnett, Feb. 6, 2014

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