$2.5 Million For Failing To Diagnose Blood Clot

Failure to Diagnose

36 year old female died 3 days after a cesarean section delivery as the result of a blood clot in her lung (a/k/a pulmonary embolism) in Albany, New York.

Following the cesarean delivery, the new mother began complaining of pain and swelling in her legs. Leg pain and swelling can be a classic sign of deep venous thrombosis (blood clot in the deep veins of the leg), but the new symptoms were not evaluated by the nurses or doctors at the hospital. A non-invasive test known as a duplex ultrasound could have detected the blood clot, but testing was not ordered.

Within 18 hours of her discharge from the hospital, the mother suddenly experienced shortness of breath and died at home. The autopsy revealed a blood clot in the mother’s lung that had moved from her legs and had been present for 2-3 days before her death. The blood clot blocked blood supply to the mother’s lung and caused her death by asphyxiation. Had the blood clot been diagnosed, a vena cava filter and intravenous anticoagulation (blood thinning medication) could have prevented the blood clot from traveling from the mother’s leg to her lung and prevented additional blood clots from forming.

The case settled for $2.5 million. The settlement funds will provide for the educational trust for the mother’s 3 year old daughter and a structured settlement trust for her husband.

$2.5 Million for Failing to Diagnose a Blood Clot in Albany, New York