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Infection lingered undiagnosed for months, patient claims

When allowed to persist and grow unchecked, even seemingly minor infections can rapidly develop into something much more serious and life-threatening. For the best recovery possible, it is often necessary that doctors diagnose infections as early on and as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, hospital negligence is still prevalent in many hospitals in New Jersey and elsewhere, and it is entirely possible for a severe infection to slide by without diagnosis or treatment.

After undergoing a sacral cyst excision in May 2013, a patient in another state began to experience continual drainage at the site of the surgery that extended well into the fall of that same year. He also described ongoing pain not only at the surgical site, but also in both of his hips. When he complained to doctors who had performed the surgery, he was given a medication intended to treat what was initially diagnosed as a superficial infection.

In Oct. 2013, the patient visited his family doctor and was finally given an accurate diagnosis. As a Type 2 diabetic, the man was already at risk for developing two different infections post-surgery -- lumbar staph osteomyelitis or methicillin-resistant staphylococcus. Rather than the superficial infection he had previously been diagnosed with, his family doctor determined that he was actually suffering from either LSO or MRSA.

The victim continues to suffer from the effects of the infection and blames the doctors who failed to accurately diagnose him in the first place. A common avenue for handling these types of allegations in New Jersey is for victims to file medical malpractice claims against the health care professionals suspected of acting negligently. While this is typically an effective course of action for achieving compensation, it is also possible that other patients will be protected from similar injuries.

Source: cookcountyrecord.com, "Man sues over allegedly underestimated post-op infection", Dan Harkins, Aug. 3, 2015

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Alan D. Bell
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