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Case #4046 Pulmonary Embolus Resulting in Death


On May 1, the Plaintiff’s Decedent experienced acute onset of severe shortness of breath, chest pressure as well as numbness and tingling in her arms while driving her car.  She lost consciousness and was transported to the Defendant Hospital by emergency personnel.  While in the emergency room, she again experienced the same symptoms, indicated to hospital personnel that she could not breath, and that she felt as if she was going to die.  The Plaintiff’s Decedent had never experienced these symptoms in the past, was relatively young, but gave a history of taking oral contraceptives, decreased activity and was noted to be obese.

The Plaintiff alleged that, despite the Decedent’s risk factors as well as clinical presentation, signs and symptoms, the Defendant health care providers failed to consider pulmonary emboli (blood clots to the lung) as an explanation for her problem.  Five days after being admitted, the Plaintiff’s Decedent suffered a massive pulmonary embolus, which caused cardiorespiratory collapse and death.  She left behind three minor children.

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