Month: August 2017

Widow files $10 million wrongful-death lawsuit against Springfield hospital, doctors

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Aaron Martineau of Eugene was five days short of his 29th birthday when he died in September 2014.

A $10 million lawsuit filed Thursday on his behalf asserts Martineau’s death from a heart condition happened just 24 hours after he was ­misdiagnosed with noncardiac chest pain and discharged from a Springfield hospital.

Named as defendants in the wrongful-death suit are McKenzie-Willamette Medical Center; doctors Dariusz Zawierucha and Gary Josephsen; and a pair of local physiciansgroups, Doctor’s Emergency Room Corp., P.C., and Radiology Associates, P.C., which employed the doctors at the time of Martineau’s hospital visit.

Martineau’s widow, Jamie Martineau, alleges in the suit filed in Lane County Circuit Court that her husband went to ­McKenzie-Willamette’s emergency room on Sept. 2, 2014, while suffering from problems that included chest pain, shortness of breath and a slow heart rate.

A physician’s assistant created a list of potential diagnoses that raised the possibility that Martineau was suffering from “serious and potentially life-threatening cardiovascular and cardiopulmonary conditions,” the lawsuit says.

But after medical officials ordered an X-ray and reviewed it, they diagnosed Martineau with noncardiac chest pain and discharged him from the hospital, according to the suit.

He died one day later as a result of aortic dissection, the suit says.

According to the Mayo Clinic’s website, aortic dissection is somewhat rare. It results from a tear in the aorta, a large blood vessel branching off the heart. If blood from the tear ruptures the outside aortic wall, the condition often is fatal, according to the website.

The site also says that symptoms of aortic dissection may mimic those of other diseases, often leading to delays in diagnosis. The chance of survival greatly improves when the condition is detected early and treated promptly, according to the clinic’s website.

Jamie Martineau’s lawsuit alleges the “limited examinations and tests” done on her husband during his emergency room visit were insufficient to rule out or confirm serious conditions that were consistent with his symptoms.

She is seeking up to $3.5 million in economic damages as compensation for medical, funeral and burial expenses as well as the loss of Aaron Martineau’s income, earning capacity and services to his family and household.

The suit also seeks up to $6.5 million in noneconomic damages to compensate Aaron Martineau’s family for the loss of a loved one and to cover the “pain, anguish and mental trauma” that he suffered from the time of his discharge from the hospital until his death.

A McKenzie-Willamette spokeswoman did not respond to a request for comment. Officials with the physicians’ groups who were contacted Friday indicated they were not authorized to comment. The defendants have not yet filed formal responses to the suit in court.

Tony Taylor-65

Name: Tony Taylor
Age at time of Dissection: 65
Type of Dissection: Descending
Date of Aortic Dissection: 3 March 2014
Tell Us Your Story:

I have been monitoring this excellent forum for three years, and I thought it was about time for me to weigh in here. I am doing it mostly to offer an alternative set of circumstances that can indicate an aortic dissection. In a nutshell, three years ago I had a small hemorrhagic stroke, and in the course of the diagnosis the doctors discovered that I had a Type B aortic dissection that extended “all the way down.”

The point I want to make is that my dissection was accompanied by no pain whatsoever; the stroke and dissection were completely unrelated. So in a sense that stroke was the luckiest thing that ever happened to me. It revealed a serious problem that I might never have found out about until it was too late.

In the intervening three years I had an endovascular aneurysm repair, but I am fine. I have been lucky with no pain. From this point on it’s all about blood pressure control and being careful with what I lift and how I lift. So except for the initial few weeks of being scared, I have gotten on with my life with only a few common-sense changes.

Open repair of chronic thoracic, thoracoabdominal aortic dissection with deep hypothermia ups 10 …

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Open repair of chronic thoracic and thoracoabdominal aortic dissection using hypothermia offers many advantages in suitable patients with this complex pathology and continues to represent the gold standard, according to new research.

The procedure has good operative outcomes and long-term survival, according to the new study published in the August 2017 issue of the Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery.

“The advantages of this technique include organ and spinal cord protection, the flexibility to extend the repair proximally into the arch, and the ability to limit ischemic injury to important vascular beds,” wrote lead author Joel Corvera, director of thoracic vascular surgery with the Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis. “They disadvantage include longer perfusion times and limited applicability to the ruptured aneurysm.”

The study cohort comprised 664 patients (74 percent male) with a mean age of 58 + 14 years who underwent open thoracic (by left thoracotomy) or thoracoabdominal aneurysm repair using deep hypothermia and circulatory arrest. Surgeries were performed between 1995 and 2015.

Patients’ overall operative mortality was 3.6 percent, and they experienced a permanent stroke rate of 1 percent. The need for reintervention was low, and patients had good long-term survival, with 10-year survival at approximately 60 percent.

The researchers found that open and endovascular repair should not be viewed as competing modalities, but rather as complementary ones. For young or otherwise appropriate candidates, they wrote, open repair should continue to be considered the gold standard, and under ideal circumstances all patients with connective tissue disorders should have open repair.

Other types of patients, older or with multiple comorbidities, might be better served with endovascular repair, they stated. They predicted that the paradigm for open versus endovascular repair will probably shift as the technology for endovascular devices advances and as branched or fenestrated thoracoabdominal systems become available.

In an accompanying editorial, Joseph S. Coselli, who is with division of cardiothoracic surgery within the Michael E. DeBakey department of surgery at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, commended Corvera and colleagues for their outstanding surgical skill and results.

Coselli reported that despite the fact that endovascular techniques are being used and reported with growing frequency of late, until such techniques become safe and established, the use of open techniques to repair chronic aortic dissection will remain the standard of therapy.

Jack Paltell-64

Name: Jack Paltell
Age at time of Dissection: 64
Type of Dissection: Ascending
Date of Aortic Dissection: 17 July 2015
Tell Us Your Story:

Stabbing pain, right side of chest and back, a tearing sensation in my chest, lightheartedness…not that bad, I thought to myself, must be indigestion.” A minute or so passed and the pain increased, I began to feel faint.” “Jeff,” I called out to my law partner in the office next door, “call 911, I’m having a heart attack.” And I passed out at my desk.

I don’t remember the paramedics arriving, or the ambulance trip to the hospital, or my wife’s arrival, or the priest giving me the sacrament of the sick, but I remember asking the doctors to try to save my legs which were numb, and the throbbing of the helicopter blades on the ride from Annapolis to University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore where the thoracic surgery team awaited my arrival, and where the intricate life-saving open heart procedure was flawlessly performed by Dr. Zachary Kon at 2am.

That was Friday night, July 17, 2015. On Monday morning, July 20, 2015, I was walking circuits around the ICU and trying to remember the words to the Gettysburg address. I had an ascending aortic dissection, and the emergency room physician, Dr. Kenneth Gummerson, correctly diagnosed it. He and my law-partner, Jeff Gauges, and of course, God, saved my life.

It has been two years since the event. I am well, but not the same. Better in some ways. Not as good in others. Wiser, more thoughtful, slower to anger, slower to judge. I weigh less, but am strong again. I can do pushups. My hypertension, which had plagued me since my mid-thirties is well controlled with medication and the DASH Diet. I lift weights, run, bicycle, hike, play music, and work at my law practice, but at a different pace than before. I understand more about love, I think, and care less about money; I do more work for charity and less work for wealthy clients; I say grace before I eat. Life is slower, I linger longer over a photograph or a painting in a museum. People mean far more to me than things.

The physiological journey has been relatively easy for me. I am married to a wonderful wife, I have great doctors and before the incident, I was comparatively fit. My body was able to handle the insult that is open heart surgery. The spiritual journey has been a little more complex; it has taken a little longer for me to accept my lack of control over my destiny and to simply permit God to guide me to the next destination.

I am hopeful that others will have the opportunity to benefit from excellent medical care and will perceive an aortic dissection as a message from God and your body, that something about your life needs to change. Many on this message board have used the same words. Very few of us get a second chance.

How Left Coast CrossFit Saved Erik’s Life

How Left Coast CrossFit Saved Erik’s Life

William Overdevest-49

Name: William Overdevest
Age at time of Dissection: 49
Type of Dissection: Ascending
Date of Aortic Dissection: 20 December 2015
Tell Us Your Story:

H ello. I live in Simcoe ON. I live alone, and fortunately when my ascending aortic dissection began. My brother and nephew were over watching Sunday night football. About 10;15 p.m I felt a tight feeling in my jaw. It moved to my neck, back and lower back immediately. My brother called 911.

I was lucky the area Dr. was familiar with Marfan s Syndrome, which I mentioned I had. He sent me immediately to Hamilton General by ambulance. During the ride to HGH. Dr. Driver who s presence was requested by Dr. Bardon, the ER Dr. AT Norfolk General. Whatever he did he saved my right arm and leg, which were black and blue from the blood clots, and I was most likely going to have them amputated, did something in the 45 minute ride to Hamilton, that saved my limbs. I arrived at HGH at about 1 a.m. At 1;3 ish.

Dr. Adel Dyub arrived, and examined me and spoke to me and my family. He assembled his team, and I went into the OR at approx. 4 a.m. The surgery was about 15 hours. My organs had shut down and began dying. I have been told that my organs had to be removed and I was literally put back together. My brain was frozen to 23 degrees F. for approx. 25 minutes.. I have only recently learned to some extent what I had been through.

I have been told many many times I am a true miracle. That in my case, if a 1000 people came in like me, I am the one that survives.. I spent 8 and a half days in ICU. I had been complaining about my tongue, and it was quite swollen. 3 weeks after the surgery, my tongue basically exploded.

I was rushed back to Er area . I lost 4 litres of blood in 3 and a half hours, before I was brought in to the OR. where Dr. Corman a professor at Macmaster Hospital. Miraculously managed to cut out died tongue tissue. Reattach my tongue and stitch up a 9 cm long by 1 cm wide and a half cm deep. Which it has held together and healed nicely. I spent 4 days in ICU for this procedure. I have covered briefly what I had gone through.

I am told that I am famous. I assume in the eyes of the medical community. I had signed waivers permitting publications of what I experienced, in order to help Dr.s learn from my ordeals. Currently I am part of a group study of 300 people taking Entrersto. Fyi April 18th 2016. I was rushed back to HGH. For heart failure, my ejection fraction was down to 19% and I was told, it had to go up.

That if it continued to drop, it didn t look good for me. I spent 4 days in the cardiac care unit at HGH. Again the staff was amazing. I Hope this brief explanation helps. Thank you to everyone that helped to save my life. Beginning with my brother Frank, the Dr.s at NGH, and everyone at Hamilton General Hospital. A Special thanks To RPN Colleen Powers and Irene Travale 5 South, Dr. Buchanan Dr. Corman . Dr. Dyub. My cardiologist Dr. Greg Curnew, his staff. And the nurse tending to me through this Entresto study Aleks. I can never thank you guys enough. I hope this helps Thanks
William Overdevest

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