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Air Embolism Malpractice

Medical Negligence Lawyers Representing Victims in Baltimore and Surrounding Communities

Air embolisms can have devastating, even deadly consequences for a patient. If you or a loved one has been affected by an air embolism or another never event caused by a medical professional’s error, you need to speak to a Baltimore medical malpractice attorney who can help. At Arfaa Law Group, we can examine your case and help you understand your legal options for financial compensation. We are committed to getting our clients the justice and resolution that they deserve for their harm, and our strong record of verdicts and settlements (including some of the largest in Maryland history) speaks to our success in this area.

Holding a Health Care Provider Accountable for Air Embolism Malpractice

There are 29 separate events classified as “never events” by the National Quality Forum, and one of those events is an air embolism. Air embolisms typically take place due to intravenous introduction of air into the bloodstream. Put another way, an air embolism is a condition in which air bubbles enter the circulation, usually due to trauma or surgery. It can happen from an injection or when an IV or catheter is placed into a blood vessel. Common causes of an air embolism include:

  • Ruptured catheter or tubing – in tubing, small holes can allow air into the IV.
  • Improper priming of tubing – this is when the tubing is not properly primed or primed while the patient is attached.
  • Improper removal of catheter or tubing – there is a risk of air entering the bloodstream during the removal of an IV.

An air pocket in the blood can travel to the brain or to the heart, resulting in fatal blockages. Unfortunately, air embolism as a result of an IV or catheter in patients has a mortality rate of 30 percent. Even patients who survive an air embolism often suffer serious complications, such as stroke, heart attack, blindness, or brain damage.

Doctors, nurses, and other health care professionals are trained in how to prevent air embolisms as well as in how to look out for these potentially deadly situations. If a patient suffers harm due to a medical professional’s failure to recognize symptoms associated with an air embolism, that medical professional can be liable for medical malpractice. Medical malpractice takes place when a medical professional’s actions or inactions deviate from the conduct that a reasonably prudent medical professional in the same specialty would have undertaken in the same or a similar situation, thereby causing an injury or death to a patient.

Under Maryland law, there are certain procedural requirements that must be fulfilled before a medical malpractice case goes to court. Under the state’s medical malpractice statutes, the claim must first be filed with the Director of the Health Claims Arbitration Office. In addition, the plaintiff or their attorney must submit a certificate from a qualified medical expert, stating that the defendant medical professional deviated from the appropriate standard of care, causing the patient’s harm.

Victims of medical malpractice are entitled to receive fair and reasonable compensation for all of their injuries and losses, past and future, which are directly caused by a medical professional’s negligence. Plaintiffs in Maryland can recover two types of damages: economic and non-economic. Economic damages are money awarded as compensation for monetary losses and out-of-pocket expenses, such as medical expenses, lost wages, rehabilitation costs, and disability. Non-economic damages are money awarded as compensation for non-monetary losses and injuries, such as pain and suffering, mental anguish, loss of enjoyment, or disfigurement.

Discuss Your Potential Case with a Baltimore Attorney

Air embolisms are rare but preventable medical conditions. If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of an air embolism caused by a medical professional’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation. At Arfaa Law Group, our medical malpractice attorneys understand the steps to take to protect your rights. We represent people in the Baltimore area and throughout the state of Maryland. For a free consultation, do not hesitate to call us at 410-889-1850 or contact us online.