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The authors of this article investigated Rejuvenate hip implant failures in order to identify patients who are at particularly high risk for developing adverse tissue reactions (ALTR). They also wanted to determine how accurate MRI and metal ion levels are in detecting ALTR. The results confirmed that females and small Rejuvenate stem sizes were at a higher risk of early failure as a result of a symptomatic pseudotumor within 3 years of follow-up. No one can seem to explain however, why some people with low cobalt-chromium levels and no pseudotumors develop symptoms, while some patients with high metal levels and pseudotumors remain asymptomatic.  The authors found that cobalt and chromium levels were not as accurate in identifying ALTR as MRI. Dr. Ghanem and his colleagues felt that the potential for developing complications with dual modular stems, such as the Rejuvenate outweighs their benefits.

Ghanem, E. et al. (2015). Corrosion and Adverse Local Tissue Reaction in One Type of Modular Neck Stem, Journal of Arthroplasty, Epub

On behalf of Weisman, Kennedy & Berris Co., L.P.A. posted in medical malpractice on Wednesday, May 30, 2012.

There are some workplaces where we wish errors never occurred. Hospitals undoubtedly rank high on that list. Yet mistakes do happen, and a new study indicates that fatigue may be a significant cause of medical errors in Cleveland and across the country.

According to a study recently published in the Archives of Surgery, surgical residents may work under fatigue nearly half the time, resulting in cognitive functioning at around 80% of full capacity. To put that in context, mental functioning while legally drunk (a blood alcohol level of 0.08%) is around 70%. The study is one of the first to quantify resident surgeon fatigue and the accompanying risk of medical error.

According to a report from the Institute of Medicine, around 98,000 deaths a year are caused by medical errors. Another report by the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) indicates that U.S. surgeons may operate on the wrong body part as often as 40 times a week.

A lawsuit may be one way to deter medical negligence and provide fair compensation to victims of surgical error. Unfortunately, it’s usually an uphill battle. According to another research study which examined more than 10,000 medical malpractice law suits from around the country, the average claim took 19 months to resolve, and only 4.5% of those suits even reached the stage of a jury trial. Once there, ever fewer of the victims won: more than half were dismissed, and most of the remaining claims ended in settlement.

If you or a loved one has been injured and you believe that the doctor was at fault, don’t delay in consulting an attorney: Ohio state law typically requires a medical malpractice claim to be brought within a specified time after the injury. An attorney can help you prepare your best claim and obtain the compensation you deserve.

Source: Huffington Post, “Sleepy Surgeons: New Study Shines Light On Risks Of Surgeon Fatigue,” Catherine Pearson, May 21, 2012

On behalf of Weisman, Kennedy & Berris Co., L.P.A. posted in Medical Malpractice on Monday, July 30, 2012.

Our readers in Ohio should know that doctors are mandated to report child abuse when they suspect it, and sometimes medical professionals can be found guilty of malpractice when they fail to notify authorities of abuse. It is important that medical errors of this nature are fully investigated and that the responsible parties are held accountable.

A physician in Dayton was charged on July 25 with failing to report the abuse of a teen patient. Thus far, the doctor has not commented on the charges. She treated the 14-year-old girl for about one year prior to the child’s death in March 2011. The girl weighed only 28 pounds when she died, and she had been under treatment for cerebral palsy. Three nurses who treated the teenager have also been charged; they have pleaded not guilty.

In this case, the mother of the child has already been sentenced to nine years in prison after pleading guilty to endangering children and involuntary manslaughter. However, other family members may conceivably have grounds to file a civil claim against the medical professionals who failed to report the abuse.

Child endangerment cases and any accompanying allegations of neglect can lead to strong emotions, especially when cases are reported in the news media. If the child in question is a patient under a doctor’s care, investigators may question why the doctor did not report seemingly obvious symptoms of neglect.

Patients who are the victims of medical malpractice are entitled to fair compensation. Ohio residents who believe they have suffered because of a medical professional’s error should be aware of their rights under our state’s medical malpractice laws.

Source: WFMJ, “Doctor charged in Ohio teen’s malnutrition death,” July 25, 2012

On behalf of Weisman, Kennedy & Berris Co., L.P.A. posted in wrongful death on Monday, August 6, 2012.

Motor vehicle accidents involving pedestrians are particularly dangerous and are much more likely to result in serious injuries or death than collisions between vehicles. When a driver has been drinking or using drugs, victims of a car crash may be entitled to compensation to help with the recovery process. In cases in which a drunk driver causes the death of another person, that person’s family can sometimes recover compensation for damages through a wrongful death claim.

On July 31, a 35-year-old man was arraigned on a charge of operating a vehicle while impaired, which is also called an OVI. This charge stemmed from a July 29 crash at Cleveland’s “Dancing in the Street Festival” on 117th Street and Clifton Boulevard. The bail was set at $150,000, and the driver’s attorney (not affiliated with this firm) did not contest that amount.

Three pedestrians were injured, and one was killed in the accident. While the three injured pedestrians, aged 25, 37 and 44, may file lawsuits related to their injuries, the family of the deceased pedestrian, who was 27, may legally claim that their loved one suffered a wrongful death.

One of the injured pedestrians remains in critical condition and may have a greater claim to funds than the other two. Hospital stays are extremely expensive, and anyone who has been injured because of another driver’s negligence may find it beneficial to pursue a personal injury claim to help alleviate some of the medical costs.

In cases in which criminal charges are filed, it can be easier to pursue civil claims against a drunk or distracted driver. In this case, the driver has three prior drunk driving convictions on his record. The outcome of the most recent charge will be the most relevant criminal charge in any civil suits related to the street fair incident.

Source: News Channel 5, “Bond set at $150K for driver accused of killing 1, injuring 3 others at Cleveland street fair,” Paul Brest, July 31, 2012

On behalf of Weisman, Kennedy & Berris Co., L.P.A. posted in car accident on Tuesday, September 4, 2012.

Driving while texting has been proven to be a distraction that can cause serious car accidents, resulting in property damage, personal injury or loss of life. There is no doubt about it: a distracted driver is a hazard on the road, and it only takes a moment of inattention for an otherwise innocuous moment to become fatal. That is why the Ohio legislature just made it easier for victims of distracted driving to prove another driver’s negligence.

On Aug. 31, two bans on mobile communications devices went into effect in Ohio. For drivers under the age of 18, getting caught using any mobile communication device while behind the wheel of a car is a primary offense that results in a significant fine and a 60-day driving suspension. This ban includes phones, tablets, portable gaming devices and handheld GPS units. The new law prohibits texting, talking, emailing or otherwise using these devices while driving.

For adults 18 and over, sending or reading texts while behind the wheel of a car is now a minor misdemeanor. It is classified as a secondary offense, which means the police must have another reason to pull a driver over before the officer can write a ticket for texting. Ohio is the 39th state to put laws banning texting while driving on the books.

Victims of car crashes resulting from a driver’s use of a cell phone or other communication device now have the law on their side. The usage log on these devices can help prove that the driver was distracted and in violation of the law at the time of the accident. This makes it easier to prove who was at fault and helps ensure that accident victims are compensated for their losses.

Source: Ohio News Network, “Statewide Texting Ban Takes Effect Friday,” Aug. 30, 2012

On behalf of Weisman, Kennedy & Berris Co., L.P.A. posted in wrongful death on Tuesday, October 9, 2012.

When people make purchases from local businesses, they typically don’t expect to end up in a quarrel that results in injury or worse. Unfortunately, that is what appears to have happened to a Wheelersburg man, and his widow has filed a wrongful death suit against the business and two representatives because of the fatal incident.

The lawsuit alleges that representatives of Stakers Sales and Service in Ohio sold the couple a used lawnmower in January. Later, the company claimed the couple owed them money for the machine, which the couple disputed. Two representatives from the company appeared at the couple’s residence on July 11 and demanded the disputed payment. Shortly afterward, they left threatening to return.

Allegedly, the two representatives returned the next day and one shot the decedent in chest with a pistol.

The lawsuit charges the business and the two men with trespassing, intentional infliction of emotional distress, assault, and common law battery. The widow is seeking damages for loss of companionship, loss of earning, funeral expenses, care, counseling, mental anguish and attorney’s fees among other things.

The man allegedly responsible for shooting the victim was not indicted by a grand jury. However, the burden of proof for criminal cases is very different from civil cases. Those in similar situations, however, should research their legal options before filing a case with the Ohio courts. Speaking to an attorney experienced in wrongful death may be helpful. A death in the family shouldn’t also bring with it financial difficulties.

Source: Portsmouth-DailyTimes.com, “Holsinger’s widow files civil suit against Stakers,” Frank Lewis, Oct. 3, 2012

On behalf of Weisman, Kennedy & Berris Co., L.P.A. posted in wrongful death on Friday, November 30, 2012.

Losing a loved one is never easy. It can be especially painful if the person dies because of the negligent actions of another party. Unfortunately, sometimes fatal accidents are not the fault of one person in particular, but rather the fault of a business and its practices. Ohio businesses have a duty to make sure their products or services are safe for public consumption. Failure to do so can result in a fatal accident and having a wrongful death suit levied against them.

Jury screening has begun in a wrongful death lawsuit filed by the family of an out-of-state woman who died after a 7,200-volt power line fell on her. On June 2, 2009, the 39-year-old mother of two was trapped under the power line and incurred burns over 85 percent of her body. She died three days later at a hospital. The accident happened outside of her home in the presence of her two daughters and their grandmother.

The family of the victim contends that the power company, West Penn Power Company at the time, failed to remove rust from the line splices. The rust could have caused the wire to lose tension due to increased temperature and fall. The suit maintains that the utility company should have been aware of that.

FirstEnergy Corp., who is based in Akron and now owns West Penn Power Company, denies the allegations. After jury selection, the trial is expected to last two weeks. If the family’s suit is successful, they will likely collect compensation for the loss of a loved one including funeral expenses, pain and suffering, and other damages.

Source: TribLive.com, “Jurors being screened in suit over North Huntingdon woman’s electrocution death,” Paul Peirce, Nov. 15, 2012

On behalf of Weisman, Kennedy & Berris Co., L.P.A. posted in Products Liability on Monday, December 10, 2012.

There are many products available that are intended to make people’s lives easier in various ways. Unfortunately, some of slip through manufacturing with design defects or dangers that are not readily apparent or adequately explained. Anyone who suffers injury or loss because of a dangerous product may be entitled to financial compensation.

On Dec. 5, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission filed an administrative complaint against the manufacturer of a baby seat which has been implicated in five infant deaths. The complaint is seeking the mandatory recall of the recliners and refunds for all purchasers. A spokesman for the CPSC called it a “rare and serious” step, with this being only the fourth time it has been taken in 11 years.

The product in question is a foam baby seat, modelled after a car seat, which is intended to hold babies in a safe manner and allow them to sleep without supervision. To assist with this, the seat is fitted with a safety harness to restrict the baby’s movement.

The deaths appear to have occurred when parents used the recliners in a crib, resulting in the infants suffocating on blankets or crib bumpers. Although the manufacturer did not recommend that the product be used in this way, the position of the CPSC is that manufacturers should anticipate how consumers will use their products and non-recommended use does not exempt them from liability.

Those who have been the victim of injury or loss caused by a defective or dangerous product should investigate to see if they can obtain compensation through personal injury suits or a class action suit.

Source: Philly.com, “Consumer product agency seeks recall of Berwyn company’s Nap Nanny and refunds for buyers,” Diane Mastrull, Dec. 7, 2012

Rain makes driving more hazardous, and drivers must be especially careful in these conditions. Unfortunately, some young drivers in Ohio fail to follow warnings about speeding in adverse weather conditions. Devastating car accidents can result.

On Ohio 7, where the speed limit is 55 miles per hour, a teenage driver’s speed reached as high as 74 miles per hour. It was raining and he lost control of the vehicle, which crashed into an SUV that was headed in the opposite direction. The driver of the other vehicle, an elementary school teacher, was killed, and her 2-year-old grandson suffered serious injuries. According to the young boy’s mother, the injuries that resulted from the accident will limit his mobility for the rest of his life.

Because the enormous weight of large commercial trucks makes them more dangerous than other vehicles, commercial drivers must be more cautious than other Ohio drivers. Unfortunately, when these large commercial trucks are involved in accidents, their enormity makes it difficult for victims to survive.
our young children lost their father in a deadly truck accidentnear Lisbon. The driver of a dump truck apparently swerved in reaction to traffic and hit the man’s SUV as he was driving from the opposite direction. After the collision, the dump truck driver reportedly jumped out of his car and attempted to save the man, but he had been killed instantly. Now the victim’s family wants the driver to be punished for the death.