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Did medical malpractice lead to woman's untimely death?

When a person in Louisiana or elsewhere requires medical attention for any reason, regardless of location or station in life, he or she has the right to expect optimum care. However, a situation that happened recently in another state led one family to think that perhaps sometimes some patients are treated differently than others. Reportedly, the family of a woman who died while in custody are claiming medical malpractice and plan to sue the jail, a doctor and medical practice that they believe are responsible for her death.

The 31-year-old woman died at a detention center in Aug. 2017, only days after arriving at the facility and admitting to using injectable drugs. According to court documents, she began experiencing withdrawal symptoms shortly after admission, which reportedly continued for the next few days and included nausea, vomiting and increasing anxiety and irritability. Although she received temporary care at the in-house medical facility, her withdrawal symptoms continued. Reportedly, she began experiencing hand spasms, which apparently had been a symptom during previous withdrawal periods. Apparently, after medical personnel prescribed a muscle relaxant, the patient was told to drink more water and report to a nurse if the spasms continued.

According to the family, that evening, the woman was left in the medical facility unattended. She was found unconscious later that night and died an hour later. The family believes the woman died from extreme dehydration, and they have filed a notice of the intent to file a lawsuit in medical malpractice. Among other claims, they believe the defendants did not apply the same standard of care as would typically be applied in this type of situation and failed to recognize and properly treat withdrawal symptoms in a heroin-dependent patient.

In addition to the grieving process that follows the death of a loved one, especially if it was sudden and unexpected, this family is left with the heart-wrenching feeling that the prison and medical professionals involved were grossly negligent in their actions, resulting in the woman's death. Louisiana residents who believe they have endured a similar situation involving negligence may wish to pursue a civil lawsuit. A skilled medical malpractice attorney can review individual case details and discuss options for legal recourse.

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