7-2 Final Project.docx - Running Head FINAL PROJECT MALPRACTICE CASE ANALYSIS a Southern New Hampshire University Final Project Malpractice Case

7-2 Final Project.docx - Running Head FINAL PROJECT...

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Running Head: FINAL PROJECT: MALPRACTICE CASE ANALYSIS a Southern New Hampshire University Final Project: Malpractice Case Analysis June 22, 2019 1
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Running Head: FINAL PROJECT: MALPRACTICE CASE ANALYSIS Introduction In January of 2001, Arturo Iturralde was admitted to Hilo Medical Center (HMC) because of several falls he occurred due to weakness in his legs. Mr. Iturralde was evaluated by orthopedic surgeon Dr. Robert Ricketson on January 24, 2001. It was determined at that time that he suffered from degenerative spondylolisthesis L4-5 with stenosis. This is a condition that puts pressure on the nerves causing leg weakness, which explain the falls that Mr. Iturralde had. Spinal surgery including titanium rods could help his spine condition. The parts needed for the surgery were ordered and the surgery was scheduled for January 29, 2001. The day of surgery, Dr. Ricketson was advised by Nurse Vicky Barry that inventory for the parts had not been completed but he went ahead with the surgery anyway. When it came time to adhere the titanium rods to Mr. Iturralde’s spine, Dr. Ricketson was made aware that they were unable to be located. The company that was supplying the parts said they could have new titanium rods at the hospital within two hours. Dr. Ricketson felt that waiting two hours would expose the patient to more infection so he decided he would use a screw driver that was included in the parts kit. Mr. Iturralde was never made aware that he received a screw driver in his spine instead of the titanium rods that Dr. Ricketson explained he would be getting. After surgery in the hospital, he suffered another fall resulting in the screw driver shattering. On February 5, 2001 Dr. Ricketson brought Arturo Iturralde back to surgery to remove the shattered screw driver and implant the proper titanium rods. After being discharged from the hospital Mr. Iturralde’s health declined significantly. He was unable to care for himself and became completely bedridden before passing away on June 18, 2003. Medical Malpractice Component 2
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Running Head: FINAL PROJECT: MALPRACTICE CASE ANALYSIS In order to win a negligent case it is important for the plaintiff to prove four elements. They are duty, breach, cause and harm. Once Dr. Ricketson made a diagnosis and agreed to perform surgery on Mr. Iturralde, he had a responsibility to give him good care. Dr. Ricketson breached their contract when he did not put the correct equipment into Mr. Iturralde’s spine. The screwdriver shaft that was placed into Mr. Iturralde’s spine was never approved to be implanted into a human spine. When Mr. Iturralde suffered another fall after surgery the screw driver shaft shattered causing him harm. He needed more surgeries to fix this mistake and his health declined significantly.
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