On May 9, 2018, a South Carolina medical malpractice jury returned its verdict in favor of a one-month-old child and his mother in the amount of $1,127,280 for the infant and $135,477 for his mother, for the son’s hand injury due to IV infiltration into the back of his hand.
The South Carolina medical malpractice jury deliberated for two days following a two-day South Carolina medical malpractice trial before determining that the defendant hospital was negligent in causing the infant’s permanent hand injury.
The Underlying Facts
The one-month-old infant was admitted to the defendant hospital on October 25, 2014 with no symptoms other than a fever of 102.6 degrees. An IV was placed in the infant’s hand as part of his medical treatment.
The IV had been in place for two days after which it was removed when the infant became “fussy.” The infant’s hand was observed to be puffy and bruised, with swelling to the fingers, when the IV was stopped and the dressing over the IV was removed. About twenty seven minutes later, the IV site was observed to have edema and was painful, at which time the infiltration was noted.
As a result, the infant suffered a large, painful area of dead skin over the infiltration site on the back of his hand caused by the medication (the IV antibiotics (Ampicillin and Claforan) did not flow into his bloodstream as intended but instead seeped into the tissue and muscle surrounding the IV site). The infant received wound care for the IV infiltration injury but he is nonetheless left with permanent scarring and alleged impairment.
The South Carolina medical malpractice lawsuit alleged that the hospital’s medical negligence caused the infant pain and suffering, left the back of his hand scarred and impaired, and resulted in his loss of enjoyment of life and emotional distress.
The family’s South Carolina medical malpractice lawyer stated after the jury rendered its verdict in favor of the plaintiffs, “The most disheartening aspect of this injury is how easily it could have been prevented. If [the defendant hospital] had allowed its staff to follow its own policies and procedures, this family would have never gone through this ordeal.”
The defendant hospital denied that there had been a breach of the standard of care by any of its employees and contended that the infant’s injury was due solely to a natural disease process. The defendant hospital also alleged that the plaintiff was at least equally as negligent.
The defendant hospital stated that the South Carolina medical malpractice jury’s verdict would be reduced to $600,000 pursuant to the applicable cap on damages in South Carolina medical malpractice cases. The defendant hospital reportedly is in the processs of preparing and filing post-trial motions.
If you or a loved one were harmed as a result of medical negligence in South Carolina or in another U.S. state, you should promptly find a medical malpractice lawyer in South Carolina or in your state who may investigate your medical malpractice claim for you and represent you or your loved one in a medical malpractice case, if appropriate.
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