Misdiagnosed Appendicitis Leads to Child’s Brain Damage and Leg Amputation
After their six-year old daughter suffered brain damage and an amputated leg after emergency room doctors twice failed to diagnose her with appendicitis, the parents of Hannah Hernandez filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against Midland Memorial Hospital, Midland Pediatric Associates and Midland Emergency Management, as well as three doctors who were named individually. Misdiagnosis Could Have Led to Death In July 2011, Hannah’s parents took the child to Midland Memorial’s emergency room with abdominal pain, fever, nausea and vomiting. The child was extremely ill, yet the emergency room sent her home that evening after a blood test, diagnosing her with dehydration, fever and a virus. There were no x-rays or other images taken that evening. Over the next week, Hannah’s parents took her back and forth to Midland Pediatrics, where she was once again diagnosed with dehydration, while Hannah’s condition continued to worsen. On August 5, 2011, Hannah began vomiting blood, and her parents rushed her to the hospital where imaging was performed. Doctors found that Hannah’s appendix had ruptured, and the child was airlifted to Lubbock where she underwent emergency surgery. Brain Damage and Amputation During the surgery in Lubbock, doctors were forced to remove Hannah’s right leg in order to keep the infection from her appendix from spreading. In addition, Hannah suffered cardiac arrest during the procedure, which left her with permanent brain damage. Court documents claim that the amputation and brain damage could have been avoided had doctors properly diagnosed Hannah initially. Tort Limits The Hernandez family is suing the hospital, medical practice and doctors for the cost of her medical expenses, which total more than $1.6 million, as well as an additional $40 million for the care she will require for the rest of her life. However, a Texas tor limits claims against hospitals to $100,000 and the doctors can only be held responsible for a total of $250,000. When medical errors are suspected as the cause or a contributing factor in a situation that causes injury or death, a medical malpractice claim may be in order. Contact Dallas-Fort Worth lawyers at Frenkel & Frenkel to schedule a free initial consultation regarding any case where injuries may have been caused or worsened by medical malpractice.