Cook County Emergency Room Malpractice Verdict Returned in Favor of Woman’s Surviving Family

A jury returned a Chicago medical malpractice verdict for the family of a 45 year-old diabetic woman who died after suffering a cardiopulmonary arrest while in the emergency department of Little Company of Mary Hospital. The woman is survived by two children and a husband.

The decedent’s estate alleged that the Chicago emergency room nurses failed to appropriately triage the patient as “urgent” and to properly monitor her deteriorating physical condition, which it alleged was medical negligence on the part of the Chicago hospital. According to reports, the defendant’s argued at the trial that warning alarms on devices monitoring the patient’s vital signs did not activate to indicate that her condition was worsening toward cardiac and respiratory arrest. However, the jury obviously did not buy into this defense and found that the Chicago emergency room errors had resulted in the decedent’s death.

The woman had severe hyperglycemia when she arrived at the Chicago hospital. Hyperglycemia is a condition in which an excessive amount of glucose/sugar circulates in the blood and is something that the Chicago emergency room staff should evaluate for, especially in those already diagnosed with diabetes. Signs and symptoms of hyperglycemia include high blood glucose levels, high levels of sugar in the urine, frequent urination, and increased thirst. If left untreated hyperglycemia can worsen quickly and develop into a diabetic coma.

Warning signs and symptoms of pending diabetic coma are shortness of breath, nausea and/or vomiting, very dry mouth, and fruity smelling breath. The current case hinged on the emergency department’s failure to identify these symptoms in the patient and therefore not take the proper actions to prevent her death. Because of the urgent nature of many patients’ cases presenting to the emergency room, any emergency room negligence can have catastrophic results. While medical negligence is not excusable on any level, it can be disastrous when it is the result of emergency room errors.

Kreisman Law Offices has been handling Chicago medical malpractice cases involving Chicago emergency room errors for over 30 years, serving areas in and around Cook County including Des Plaines, Glencoe, Glen Ellyn, and Evergreen Park.

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