Atlee Hall Resolves ED Delayed Diagnosis Case

Written by Atlee Hall

Atlee Hall recently resolved a case against emergency department providers who failed to diagnose our client’s cardiac condition. Our client, then age 22, presented to a local Emergency Department with complaints of shortness of breath and having coughed up pink foam. He was evaluated by an emergency department physician, who suspected that he may be suffering from a pulmonary embolism (PE). The physician ordered a test to rule out a PE.

Before the results of that test came back, the physician went off duty and transferred our client’s care to a different physician. When the results of the test for PE came back negative, that physician discharged our client. No diagnosis was made, and no treatment was provided.

Approximately four months later, our client presented to a different Emergency Department with similar complaints. At that time, he was diagnosed with congestive heart failure. In the time period within which our client’s treatment was delayed, his heart muscle suffered significant damage.

Through our experts, we were able to show that had our client’s congestive heart failure been promptly diagnosed and treated, his heart would not have sustained the amount of damage that it did, and he would have avoided the need for future invasive cardiac procedures. Ultimately, the case was resolved prior to trial to our client’s satisfaction.