Denver MRI Malpractice Attorneys
Protecting the Rights of Injured Patients
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scanners have been used extensively for medical diagnostics in recent years. This type of medical imaging uses magnetic fields and radio waves to generate clear pictures of internal portions of the body. When results are misread, MRIs can lead to misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose a serious medical condition. The MRI procedure also carries certain risks. Patients can be injured while undergoing an MRI.
How Can MRIs Cause Harm to Patients?
Patients can be injured by MRIs in several different ways:
- The most common way in which MRIs injure patients is when healthcare professionals misread or misinterpret results. When this leads to failure to diagnose or misdiagnosis of a serious condition, the patient does not receive the proper treatment (or receives the wrong treatment) and the condition can worsen.
- Patients with metal in their bodies can experience complications with MRIs. This may include individuals with pacemakers, metal clips, artificial heart valves, cochlear implants, or metal prosthetic joints. Some tattoos contain traces of metal. Healthcare providers have a duty to find out if a patient has any of these before performing an MRI. The procedure can dislodge or disrupt metal objects within the patient’s body, causing serious injury or death.
- MRIs have powerful magnets that can pull in metal objects that strike the patient. There have been cases of oxygen canisters, metal slivers, and even firearms flying through the air toward MRI magnets. These flying metal objects can cause injury to patients. The cause is usually human error rather than machine malfunction when metal objects are left unsecured in the vicinity.
- Certain gadolinium contrast dyes used in MRIs can cause nephrogenic systemic fibrosis (NSF). This potentially life-threatening disease involves thickening of the connective tissue and skin. NSF can impair mobility, affect internal organs, and cause broken bones. Currently, there is no cure and no consistently effective treatment for NSF. A black box warning for gadolinium-based contrast dyes has been issued by the FDA.
- MRIs use radiofrequency transmitters that generate heat. Patients who are not properly prepared can suffer serious burns. This type of injury is usually related to misuse of the equipment by an improperly trained or negligent MRI tech. Technicians should place material between the patient and the side walls of the MRI tunnel if there is any danger of the patient coming into contact with the walls.
What Types of Negligence Contribute to Malpractice Injuries?
Medical malpractice can occur in any number of ways, when negligence results in injury to the patient. Types of negligence that contribute to malpractice injuries include:
- Failure to diagnose or misdiagnosis
- Failure to order appropriate tests
- Misreading or failing to act on laboratory results
- Prescribing the wrong medication or the wrong dosage
- Wrong site surgery and other surgical errors
- Unnecessary surgery
- Premature discharge
- Poor aftercare or follow-up
- Failure to provide the proper standard of care
How Can You Hold a Medical Provider Accountable for Malpractice?
One way to hold a healthcare provider accountable for medical negligence is to file a medical malpractice claim. Prevailing in such a claim allows you to recover damages from negligent parties for the losses you have suffered. Damages in a medical malpractice claim may include:
- Economic damages, such as medical expenses, lost wages, and loss of future earnings
- Non-economic damages, such as physical and mental pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life
- Punitive damages designed to punish the defendant and deter similar wrongdoing in the future
If you have suffered MRI injuries through medical negligence, call Leventhal Puga Braley P.C. at (303) 759-9945 or toll-free at (877) 433-3906. Our Denver-based national medical malpractice attorneys are uniquely qualified to handle your claim.
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