People who live in New Jersey may be one of the almost 1.4 million individuals in the United States with Lewy body dementia, or LBD. This is a complex and progressive disorder of the brain in which Lewy bodies accumulate in the parts of the brain that oversee movement, behavior and cognition. Its symptoms are very similar to well-known diseases such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's, resulting in the condition being severely underdiagnosed. There are many healthcare professionals, including physicians, who have no familiarity with LBD.
Many New Jersey patients have probably heard about medical cases gone wrong where patients had the wrong parts of their bodies removed or the wrong surgery performed. While these types of errors known as "never events" are rare, they can and do occur.
Each year, some New Jersey residents are seriously injured because of medical errors that are made when they go to hospitals or to their doctors' offices for care. One of the most frequently occurring types is diagnostic mistakes.
The high rate of misdiagnoses does not support the confidence that many people in New Jersey have in their medical providers. A Gallup Poll from 2010 showed that 70 percent of Americans did not feel inclined to get second opinions for their medical diagnoses. However, as many as one-third of diagnoses could be wrong or partially wrong according to the executive vice president of Advance Medical.
Chemotherapy is not the only option for treating cancer. Immunotherapy is an upcoming form of treatment where a drug enhances the immune system so that it attacks rapidly dividing cancer cells. As it is still in the developmental stage, its effects cannot be properly measured, and its side effects are often misdiagnosed.
The United States government has decided to drop the appeal of a $42 million judgment in favor of the parents of a young boy who was disabled during childbirth. According to the lawsuit, a doctor at a government-backed hospital caused traumatic brain injuries through the negligent use of forceps during the delivery. Devastating injuries similar to the ones in this case can happen anywhere in New Jersey or across the United States.
A potentially deadly condition called necrotizing fasciitis may have symptoms that are similar to the flu. New Jersey residents with the condition may notice that they are fatigued, have the chills or are nauseous. They may also notice that they have pain in certain parts of their body where there is only a minor wound, and the skin may turn red or purple at the infection site.
A dermatologist that practices in New Jersey or anywhere else in America may reduce his or her odds of being sued by communicating well with patients. Overall, male dermatologists were 2.5 times more likely to face a lawsuit than females in the same field. Since females tend to be better communicators, they also tend to be the subject of lawsuits less frequently than male dermatologists are. This data comes from research published in JAMA Dermatology that analyzed a total of 90,743 closed claims.
Residents of New Jersey who undergo spinal surgery should know about durotomy. Dural tears are tears made in the outer membrane of the spine, and they are sometimes an unintended consequence of surgery. They do not lead to serious injuries if they are discovered and repaired right away; however, they can also generate claims of medical malpractice when they go undetected.
New Jersey residents may soon have a lower risk of having their pneumonia misdiagnosed. Imaging software that is powered by artificial intelligence developed by researchers at Stanford University may be used to help physicians more accurately diagnose pneumonia.