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Lake Charles Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Law Blog

A spinal cord injury can have a dramatic impact on your life

When a person suffers from a sudden blow to the spine, that person may suffer a broken neck or broken back. These injuries may result in a spinal cord injury, or SCI, where there is damage to the spinal nerves as a result of the trauma.

As of 2005, over 40 percent of spinal cord injuries in the United States were caused by car accidents and approximately 27 percent were caused by falls. The rest of the injuries were caused by violence, sport-related accidents and other unknown causes.

A Woman Undergoes Multiple Complicated Surgeries and Scarring due to a Missed Diagnosis of Ruptured Appendix

Our client, a 41 year old female, presented to the emergency department with complaints of abdominal pain associated with nausea and vomiting. She rated her pain at "20" on a 0-10 scale. Our client was seen in the emergency room by a nurse practitioner. It was recorded by the nurse practitioner that our client had abdominal cramping, vomited 6-7 times, chills, was sweating, and had been urinating less. Upon physical examination, it was found that she had tenderness of the abdomen, with hyperactive bowel sounds. During this examination there is no documentation that appendicitis was in the differential diagnosis or that her abdomen was checked for guarding or rebound tenderness. Minimal testing was ordered; these tests included a CBC, Urinalysis, and P15. There were no radiological studies ordered or performed. Despite her complaints of excruciating pain, our client was not given pain medication until more than two and a half hours after her initial consultation with the nurse practitioner. About 3 hours after her initial arrival, our client received prescriptions for Macrobid and Zofran and was discharged with the diagnosis of a urinary tract infection. At the time she was discharged, she still was experiencing significant pain.

Medication errors occur frequently during surgeries

When Louisiana residents are under the care of a medical professional, they expect the highest quality treatment possible, especially when surgery is involved. Lake Charles surgeons are held to a standard of care agreed upon in the medical community. The standard of care typically requires a medical professional to use the same skill and care that a reasonably competent doctor in the field would use. If surgeons fail to do so, they may be guilty of medical malpractice.

The reality is that many surgeons do not adhere to the standard of care required of them. A recent study looked into some of the surgery errors that occur during medical procedures. The study looked at 275 surgeries performed at the Massachusetts General Hospital, which is Harvard-affiliated. The study found that medication errors occurred in nearly half of the surgical procedures and that one-third of these errors resulted in injury to the patients or adverse drug events. Nearly 80 percent of these errors were deemed preventable.

A Woman Falls and Suffers a Perirosthetic Left Femoral Shaft Fracture and Foot Drop during a transfer due to Nurses' Failure to Provide Maximum Assistance

Our client, an elderly lady, was admitted to a rehabilitation facility following a left hip bipolar hemi-arthroplasty for rehabilitation. Upon admission her medical history included CVA with left sided weakness, anemia, diabetes, and she was identified as being at high risk for falls. While a patient at the rehab facility, physical and occupational therapy documentation suggests that she required maximum assistance for all activities. Our client required maximum assistance to change position from sitting to standing, transferring from her bed to her chair, and transferring from her bed to her bedside commode.

Louisiana inmate's death triggers wrongful death lawsuit

Each year, families all over Louisiana lose loved ones as a result of negligence. These families may be struggling financially as well as emotionally after such a loss. Filing a wrongful death lawsuit against the responsible parties may allow families to recover damages that will help pay some of the bills.

One Louisiana family is filing a lawsuit against sheriffs and prison officials after an inmate died in his cell last year. He was found unconscious and could not be revived. Authorities say that the death was caused by severe heart problems. The family, including the man's son and two daughters, believes that the death was caused by neglect.

The Townsley Law Firm Welcomes New Attorney Jackson T. Brown

Jackson Torey Brown was born and raised in Lake Charles, Louisiana, and is the son of John Ernest Brown and Dorothy McCain, both of Lake Charles. He attended St. Margaret Catholic School and St. Louis Catholic High School. He then graduated cum laude from McNeese State University in 2012 with a B.A. in Political Science, and served a year as president of the McNeese State Pre-law and Politics Society. Upon graduating McNeese, Jackson received a merit scholarship to attend Southern University Law Center. He graduated magna cum laude from Southern University in 2015, and served as an editor of the school's law review and as a Teacher's Assistant for various professors. Jackson has now returned to Southwest Louisiana with aspirations of serving the people of this region and contributing towards its community.

Woman Suffers Genital Burns due to a Hot Weighted Speculum Being Used During a Laparoscopic Vaginal Hysterectomy

Our client was a 29 year old female who presented to the hospital for a laparoscopic assisted vaginal hysterectomy, bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy, and posterior repair under the care of an obstetrician/gynecologist. During the procedure the OBGYN attempted to place a weighted speculum into our client's vagina. The speculum slipped out and fell to the floor. The OBGYN asked for a new one and reportedly was told that there were no more and that a dirty one would have to be sterilized using an autoclaving machine. An autoclave sterilizes items by subjecting them to high pressure, high temperature steam for about 15-20 minutes. When items come out of an autoclave they are extremely hot and should be subjected to a cool down period before use. In this case, however, the nurse took the speculum directly from the autoclave and handed it to the OBGYN for use in the surgery. The hot weighted speculum upon insertion caused our client severe 2nd and 3rd degree burns to her vagina, perineal area, and bilateral inter buttocks. During the surgery, the OBGYN was not notified of the burns though they were noted to be present by the doctor's staff. The nursing staff applied Silvadene cream in the operating room to treat the blisters. In recovery, our client complained of pain being caused not by the incision, but by the blisters. The nursing staff, however, elected not to properly measure and assess our client's burns even though they were draining fluid. Our client was discharged the next day with prescriptions for Silvadine, Percocet and Colace, but with no instructions as to the care of the wounds on her vagina and buttocks.

How can I recover damages after an accident at sea?

In Louisiana, it is common for boats and ships to be used for a variety of purposes, including recreation and the transportation of goods. Because of the significant shipping industry, Louisiana has a number of laws in place to protect those who work on these sea vessels. If you or a loved one has been injured in a maritime setting, you may want to file a lawsuit against those responsible for the injuries.

So, who is eligible to receive compensation in a boating accident? The answer to this question will depend on the circumstances surrounding the accident. A number of people entitled to compensation were injured on the job. The Jones Act is a federal law that allows those who work on a vessel the right to sue their employers for negligence if that negligence plays a role in an injury or death at sea.

What are some of the most common car accident injuries?

Car accidents wreak havoc on the lives of thousands of people every year. While property damage is common, most people are focused on the serious injuries that occur as a result of the accidents. In 2012, over 5.6 million car accidents were reported nationwide. A total of over 30,000 of these accidents were fatal, while 1.6 million of them involved a variety of injuries.

The most serious car accident injuries typically involve the victim's head or back. Spinal cord injuries can result in significant nerve damage. This leaves accident victims with limited control over their appendages and can result in paralysis. Herniated disk injuries are less severe than spinal damage, but can cause numbness, muscle weakness and pain in the arms and legs. Head injuries are also fairly common and vary in severity depending on the specifics of the accident. While some victims can walk away from an accident with a mild concussion, some are faced with traumatic brain injuries, also known as TBIs. The treatment for a brain injury can require long-term medical care and rehabilitation. The victim may experience cognitive difficulties, hearing loss, vision problems and other ailments.

Poor Surgical Technique During a Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy Results in Partial Necrosis of a Woman's Liver and Eventual Right Hepatic Lobectomy

A surgeon performed a laparoscopic cholecycstectomy on our client to remove her gallbladder. Upon being discharged home, our client began experiencing pain in her upper quadrant and abdomen. Three days later she presented to the emergency room with complaints of abdominal pain, leukocytosis, abnormal liver function, a temperature of 100.8, and elevated white blood count. The same surgeon treated our client with purgatives and enemas and discharged her with a rising white blood count. For five more days our client continued to experience pain, weakness, and vomiting; due to these conditions she was admitted to the hospital for treatment. During the course of her hospitalization, an ERCP was performed which revealed extravasation of dye out of the right hepatic duct. A stent was placed through the sphincter and a percutaneus drain was placed to drain the biloma. A CT scan revealed a wedge-like defect in the liver which was suggestive of ischemia.