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Medical Malpractice Involving Breathing Tubes

All Baltimore, Maryland hospitals have been sued for allegedly causing a patient to die due to medical malpractice and the University of Maryland hospital is no exception. For example, there is the case of Elliot Muti. This 65 year old man allegedly died of medical malpractice about a month and a half after he experienced a heart attack (myocardial infarction). Before he was treated at the University of Maryland hospital, he underwent a cardiac catheterization which revealed a ninety-nine percent blockage of a heart artery that was not fit for a stent. He then was transferred to the University of Maryland hospital for heart bypass surgery. As part of this surgery, a tube was placed down Mr. Muti’s throat (intubation) to help him breathe. Later, the presence of air in the man’s chest cavity (a “pneumomediastinum”) was discovered. A bronchoscopy revealed an injury to the trachea. Ultimately, the man developed pneumonia, an abnormal heart rhythm (ventricular tachycardia), and kidney (renal) failure which led to his death. A copy the judicial opinion regarding the case can be found here.

Following his death, the man’s family filed a medical malpractice and wrongful death case against the University of Maryland hospital in the Circuit Court of Baltimore City. The trial court dismissed the case and the plaintiffs appealed. The appellate court reversed the trial court and sent the case back to the trial court to determine whether the hospital’s anesthesiologist incorrectly inserted the intubation tube causing the injury to the trachea. There is also the question of whether the hospital’s employees should have diagnosed tracheal injury.

As an experienced Baltimore, Maryland medical malpractice lawyer, I have handled a number of medical malpractice and wrongful death cases against the University of Maryland hospital. Filing a medical malpractice claim includes proving the that a duty of care was owed by the hospital to the patient, that the standard of care was breached, that the breach was a cause of an injury, and that damages resulted. They are extremely complicated and require expertise that most general personal injury attorneys do not have. To see some of the cases I have handled, click here.