Medical Risk Law Weekly News

Week of: February 11, 2019

IN THE NEWS


Nationwide Recall of Infant Ibuprofen; Risk of Overdose

On January 29, 2019, Tris Pharma, Inc., expanded the scope of its November 2018 recall by adding three additional lots of Ibuprofen Oral Suspension Drops, USP, 50 mg per 1.25 mL. Ibuprofen Oral Suspension Drops, USP, 50 mg per 1.25 mL, is used as a pain reliever and fever reducer. Click title to continue reading...


 
MEDICAL ALERTS


Test Strips to Monitor Blood Thinner Not Authorized for Sale

On February 1, 2019, the FDA warned patients and doctors that use at-home or in-the-office medical devices to monitor levels of the blood thinner warfarin that certain test strips used with the devices may provide inaccurate results and should not be relied upon to adjust the drug dosage. Click title to continue reading...



Defibrillator May Lock Up After Shock Delivered

On February 1, 2019, Stryker launched a voluntary field action on specific units of the LIFEPAK 15 Monitor/Defibrillators. The company notified LIFEPAK 15 customers of an issue that may cause the device to lock up after a defibrillation shock is delivered. The lock-up condition is defined as a blank monitor display with LED lights on, indicating power to the device, but no response in the keypad and device functions. A device in this condition has the potential to delay delivery of therapy. This delay in therapy has the potential to result in serious injury or death. Click title to continue reading...



Measles Outbreaks; Lack of Vaccination

On February 1, 2019, the CDC announced that in 2019 three measles outbreaks (defined as three or more cases) have been reported in New York state, New York City, and Washington state. From January 1 to 31, 2019, 79 individual cases of measles were confirmed in ten states. The ten states that have reported cases to the CDC are California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Texas, and Washington. Click title to continue reading...


  CASE ALERTS


Failure to Timely Diagnose and Treat Stroke

A patient presented to the emergency room (ER) complaining of nausea, vomiting, and right-side numbness and weakness. The patient’s spouse claimed the patient was falling to one side and having difficulty walking. A nurse practitioner ordered a CT scan. The radiologist who reviewed the CT scan found no acute intracranial abnormality. The radiologist cautioned that if there was a high clinical concern for an acute stroke, then an MRI should be conducted. The nurse practitioner did not order an MRI. The patient was discharged hours later with a diagnosis of gastroenteritis and hypertension. Click title to continue reading...



Actionable Injury in Vioxx Claim Against Manufacturer; Limitations

A company manufactured and distributed a medication to relieve pain and inflammation for a period of five years. A patient began taking the drug during the first year the drug was available. A year after the patient began taking the drug, the patient suffered cardiovascular injuries while taking the medication. The patient’s doctor continued to prescribe the patient the drug for two years, after which time the manufacturer changed its label to disclose the risk of cardiovascular injuries associated with the use of the drug. The drug was removed from the market two years later. Click title to continue reading...



Health Insurance Coverage Denied for Bariatric Surgery

A beneficiary of a health insurance plan requested preauthorization for bariatric surgery. The beneficiary’s medical records attached to the preauthorization request did not mention excessive nausea or vomiting. The preauthorization requested treatment for morbid obesity, was coded for obesity due to excess calories, and did not indicate any excessive nausea or vomiting. The health insurance plan administrator denied preauthorization for the bariatric surgery because bariatric or weight loss surgery was an exclusion in the health plan contract. Click title to continue reading...


FEATURE


Interrogatories to Plaintiff: Hernia Malpractice

As a special feature for our Premium subscribers, we have included illustrative interrogatories as guidance for plaintiff’s counsel in a medical malpractice action involving a patient’s misdiagnosed hernia condition and unnecessary surgery. In this illustrative situation, the patient went to a surgeon’s office complaining of intense pain in the abdomen. The surgeon incorrectly diagnosed the patient as having a cyst that could be surgically removed and, while performing this unnecessary surgical procedure, accidentally perforated the patient’s intestines. After a later diagnosis of the patient’s condition as hernia, not cyst, the patient sued the surgeon. Party identifying information has been redacted to protect privacy. Click title to continue reading...