Cleveland Medical Negligence Lawyers Advocate for Malpractice Victims When a Blood Transfusion Error Turns a Life-Saving Procedure Into a Tragedy
Preventable blood transfusion errors often have serious, or deadly ramifications
Blood transfusions save lives and provide wonderful benefits to many patients with serious medical conditions. But unfortunately, blood transfusion errors can lead to an opposite, and sometimes deadly, effect. From life-long health concerns to death, the consequences are painful, costly and overwhelming. When these tragic errors are proven to be preventable and the result of medical negligence, the Cleveland medical malpractice attorneys at The Eisen Law Firm are ready to hold responsible parties accountable. Our trial lawyers have been practicing medical malpractice law in Ohio for a combined total of nearly three decades. Our focus is on medical negligence, and we handle only a few select cases at a time, ensuring that our clients receive our concentrated and exclusive legal attention.
Common causes and reasons for blood transfusion errors and resulting injuries
Blood transfusion errors are the result of a wide range of factors:
- Poorly trained staff
- Mislabeling blood
- Mistaken patient identity/Misfiled or incomplete patient charts
- Incorrect blood typing
- Failure to double-check blood type before transfusion
- Failure to adequately screen donors
- Failure to identify signs or symptoms of adverse reaction
- Improper blood storage or refrigeration
- Failure to obtain informed consent
- Multiple simultaneous transfusions
What are some risks associated with blood transfusion errors?
When one or more of the factors detailed above leads to a blood transfusion error, the resultant risks and consequences run the gamut from mild and treatable to fatal, including:
- Allergic reactions are common and typically mild, usually resulting in no more than some itching and hives.
- Acute Hemolytic Transfusion Reaction (AHTR) can develop when you receive a transfusion of an incompatible blood type causing your immune system to attack and destroy the red blood cells you received via transfusion. Complications from AHTR can include amputation, heart attack, stroke and kidney damage.
- Blood-borne infections and illnesses are a very real danger when you are given blood from an improperly screened donor who may have been carrying a parasite, virus or bacteria. Serious conditions like AIDS, hepatitis or Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (vCJD) may be transferred in this way.
- Bacterial contamination due to improper storage can cause you to develop a serious illness quite quickly.
- Hypovolemic shock from extreme blood loss is due to a delay in administering blood to you in a timely and adequate manner.
- Iron overload can occur after repeated blood transfusion, potentially affecting the heart, liver and endocrine glands.
- Transfusion-related lung injury (TRALI) can lead to life-threatening breathing problems.
- Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) occurs when the white blood cells in the transfusion attack your tissues, more common in situations where you and your donor are related
- Overly aggressive transfusion for acute upper gi bleeding has been shown in a New England Journal of Medicine study to increase the mortality rate.
Discuss your claim for damages due to a blood transfusion error with our knowledgeable Cleveland medical negligence attorneys today
At The Eisen Law Firm, our established Cleveland medical negligence lawyers stand out in the practice of medical malpractice law in Ohio for our focus, selectivity and knowledge in the field. We concentrate on a very small number of cases each year to ensure that our clients receive all the time and attention required to develop and successfully oversee these complicated claims. To learn whether we can help you, contact our office online or call (216) 687-0900 and schedule a consultation to discuss your blood transfusion error malpractice case.
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