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Wrong medication basis of medical malpractice lawsuit

A medical malpractice suit has been filed in the death of a 60-year-old man who received the wrong medication while undergoing surgery to repair a gastric perforation. The suit was filed against North Carolina Baptist Hospital and Wake Forest University Health Sciences by the son and daughter of the decedent; however, this case could have easily occurred right here in Lexington, Kentucky.

According to court paperwork, the patient was admitted to Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center after being seen in the emergency room in June 2011. He was diagnosed with bacterial pneumonia, possible septic shock and low blood pressure. He received medication and recovered enough to have surgery for a gastric perforation. At this time, his kidney functions were within the normal limits, according to the lawsuit.

Once the surgery was complete, the anesthesiologist allegedly administered Sufentanil to begin bringing the patient out from under the anesthesia. The medication the patient was supposed to receive, however, was Fentanyl. It took almost an hour, according to the lawsuit, for the error to be noticed. Sufentanil can be ten times more powerful than Fentanyl. The drug Narcan can be used to reverse the effects of Sufentanil, but was never given to the patient.

Sufentanil is not recommended for patients with renal problems, which is one of the medical issues the man was seen for in the emergency room. When the patient received the Sufentanil, according to the lawsuit, he became completely non-responsive and his blood pressure dropped. The anesthesiologist notified the medical personnel in surgery when she realized the wrong medication had been given and told the family.

The man died three days after surgery. The attorneys for the plaintiffs allege medical negligence by the doctors, medical staff and medical facilities.

If you feel you or a loved one has been the victim of doctors errors or medical negligence, contact an attorney to discuss your options. You may have a claim for pain and suffering, medical expenses, lost wages or other damages.

Source: the-dispatch.com, “Siblings file medical malpractice suit over death of father” Darrick Ignasiak, Jun. 20, 2013

O'Brien Batten & Kirtley, PLLC is located in Lexington, KY and serves clients in and around Lexington, Keene, Nicholasville, Versailles, Midway, Georgetown, Wilmore, Paris, Bourbon County, Fayette County, Jessamine County, Scott County and Woodford County.

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