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Court: Missed diagnosis resulted in young woman’s death

The 23-year-old woman who suffered from lupus showed up at the emergency room with shortness of breath and neurological symptoms that included facial numbness and slurred speech. The symptoms necessitated that a routine blood test (a CBC and a Chem-7 test) be performed.

The test was not performed, however, and the woman’s blood disorder (thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura) was not detected. The disorder, often referred to as TPP, can be fatal if not treated. The woman was discharged from the hospital without a diagnosis or treatment. She returned to the facility 32 hours later, but it “it was too late to save her life,” a medical malpractice attorney argued in court.

After a 10-day bench trial, the Hartford Superior Court judge found in favor of the woman’s family and ordered the University of Connecticut Health Center to pay $3.3 million.

The judge agreed that timely treatment would have saved the young woman’s life.

The trial was marked by “very emotional” testimony by the victim’s sister and mother, who said her daughter “was very devoted to her family and had the dream of becoming a pharmacist.”

The family members told the court of their lost loved one’s sense of humor and “grit and determination in the face of lupus.”

She was described as “the rock of the family”; a family that had been shaken years earlier by the untimely loss of the father to a massive heart attack.

If you or a loved one has suffered harm due to medical negligence, contact a San Antonio attorney experienced in obtaining justice and compensation in medical malpractice litigation.

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