Case Studies

Closed claim studies based on actual malpractice claims

  • Failure to properly treat

    Failure to properly treat

    A 16-year-old boy came with his mother to an appointment at a dermatology practice. At the request of the mother, a PA wrote a prescription for a compound scar gel containing a steroid.

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  • Failure to follow up on MRI test results

    Failure to follow up on MRI test results

    A 40-year-old man came to his family physician with complaints of left shoulder pain for two weeks. The physician ordered an MRI and administered an injection of methylprednisolone and lidocaine.

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  • Complications from hernia repair procedure

    Complications from hernia repair procedure

    On June 25, a 35-year-old man came to an emergency department (ED) reporting right lower abdominal pain following exercise.

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  • Failure to properly manage shoulder dystocia

    Failure to properly manage shoulder dystocia

    A 35-year-old woman went to an obstetrics/gynecology practice for confirmation of pregnancy and prenatal care. She had a history of three prior pregnancies, with two ending in miscarriage.

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  • Failure to diagnose and treat infection

    Failure to diagnose and treat infection

    A 72-year-old woman with a history of diabetes went to the emergency department due to pain in her left eye. The ED physician suspected orbital cellulitis, but CBC and CT scans were normal.

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  • CASE STUDY VIDEO: Failure to Recognize Retained Sponge

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  • CASE STUDY VIDEO: Improper Prescribing

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  • Delay in surgery and improper performance

    Delay in surgery and improper performance

    On December 24, a 64-year-old man fell from a ladder and injured his left forearm. He came to the emergency department. An x-ray showed a displaced and complete fracture of radial and ulnar shafts.

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  • Failure to admit, diagnose, and treat

    On July 13 at 12:45 a.m., a 48-year-old man was brought to a hospital emergency department (ED) by air ambulance.

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  • Failure to follow up on CT scan

    On May 1, 2013, a 69-year-old man came to the ED with worsening shortness of breath. The patient’s history included smoking, COPD, and an occluded right coronary artery.

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  • Improper management of diabetic ketoacidosis

    On Dec. 15 at 10:23 a.m., a 12-year-old boy with a history of insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus came to an ED with sore throat, cough, abdominal pain, anorexia, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

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  • Incorrect course of treatment and diagnosis

    On June 2, a 61-year-old man came to the emergency department (ED) of a large hospital. He reported recurring, right-sided, lower abdominal pain for two days. He rated the pain as a 9 out of 10.

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  • Delay in recognizing intraoperative complications

    Delay in recognizing intraoperative complications

    A 58-year-old woman came to an orthopedic surgeon reporting unrelenting back pain and radiculopathy into her right leg. The patient described the pain as 10 out of 10.

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  • Failure to diagnose and treat

    Failure to diagnose and treat

    On January 10, a 35-year-old man was transported by ambulance to a hospital’s emergency department (ED) reporting headache and dizziness. The patient had a history of hypertension and hypothyroidism.

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  • Cyber fraud case study: Failure to recognize phishing email

    Cyber fraud case study: Failure to recognize phishing email

    The hospital received an email invoice from the ED group with instructions to send payment to a new account.

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  • Failure to timely intubate patient

    A 58-year-old man came to Neurosurgeon A for treatment of neck pain with radiation to his arms. The patient had a history of hypertension and diabetes.

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  • Failure to protect patient’s airway

    A 41-year-old man came to the emergency room on August 21 with severe abdominal pain for 5 days, vomiting, nausea, and inability to eat.

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  • Failure to monitor warfarin levels

    A 70-year-old woman with a history of diabetes, hypercholesterolemia, and hypertension was taken to Hospital A, due to severe aortic stenosis.

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  • Failure to properly manage warfarin dose

    An 89-year-old woman suffered a fractured right femur requiring surgical repair. She had a complicated history and comorbidities.

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  • Failure to monitor patient’s INR

    In 2007, a 65-year-old man began seeing Family Physician A for treatment of high cholesterol and bronchitis. Over the next two years, the patient was seen for routine care.

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  • Failure to confirm diagnosis of polycythemia vera

    In November 2007, a 40-year-old man was referred to an internal medicine physician by his primary care physician. The patient reported feeling weak and tired.

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