medical malpractice


the case

Plaintiff was born premature and admitted to the NICU. After being clinically stable for 5 days, Plaintiff was discharged home. Approximately 5 weeks after her birth, Plaintiff's mother notices the Plaintiff was crying a lot and eating less than normal, so she took Plaintiff's temperature and Plaintiff had a fever of 100.9. Plaintiff was taken to her pediatrician, who took Plaintiff's temperature three times- all of which were normal. The pediatrician instructed Plaintiff;s mother to take Plaintiff to the E.R. if she was not feeling better. That night, Plaintiff's mother brought Plaintiff to the E.R., where the differential diagnosis included, but was not limited to, sepsis, pneumonia, urinary tract infection and meningitis. A lumbar puncture was attempted, but was unsuccessul and only some bloody fluid (but no cerebrospinal fluid) was obtained. The next day, Plaintiff was transferred to the pediatric ward. Plaintiff was administered antibiotics, but all at non-meningitic doses. During her admission, Plaintiff had several abnormal lab results, including her white blood count, hemoglobin, hematocrit, and C-reactive protein levels, as well as a blood culture that grew gram positive cocci (one-third of gram positive blood cultures in this setting are associated with meningitis.) On the fourth night of her hospital admission, Plaintiff began having seizure like activity. The following day, Plaintiff continued to have twitching, and orders were placed for an MRI, EEG, Pediatric Infectious Disease counsultation, Pediatric Nuerology Consultation. A lumbar puncture was performed and three tubes of cloudy fluid was sent to the lab. Seizure medication was prescribed and the antibiotics were ordered at a meningitic dose for the first time. Plaintiff was transferred to the NICU. Plaintiff claimed that the Defendants were negligent when failing to timely diagnose and treat meningitis resulting in global development delays, seizures, and gastroesophageal reflux disease. Defendants contested liability, causation, and the nature, extent, and value of Plaintiff's damages.


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