Lawsuit Alleges Medical Negligence Caused Elderly Woman’s Untimely and Wrongful Death

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A Texas woman is seeking $5 million in a wrongful death lawsuit against a healthcare provider alleging negligence in the death of her elderly mother.

The 75-year-old woman was admitted to the hospital in August 2015 for symptomatic anemia (shortage of iron), acute gastritis (inflammation or swelling of the stomach lining), COPD exacerbation (shortness of breath) and mild hypokalemia (a low potassium level). After five days, she was discharged, but readmitted eight days later due to shortness of breath. During those eight days, she gained 15 pounds, despite a decrease in appetite, and also showed signs of swelling in her extremities, according to the lawsuit.

The patient was prescribed Lasix to treat fluid retention. If the medication didn’t work, she was to undergo a procedure to remove excess fluid from her chest. According to the suit, the woman did not receive the dosage recommended by the pulmonologist, causing her to suffer dangerous levels of fluid retention. She was transferred to another hospital, but during the transfer another discrepancy occurred in the Lasix orders, according to the claim. At the second hospital, the woman suffered respiratory distress. Despite continuing problems and abnormal lab results, doctors were not notified and her medication was not changed. She was found unresponsive Aug. 28, 2015 and was later pronounced dead.

The lawsuit contends the “volume overload of fluid retention caused her increasing respiratory distress” and made her gain 30 pounds in 18 days. “Left untreated, these conditions caused cardiac arrest and untimely and wrongful death,” the lawsuit states.

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