When you seek medical attention for a health problem that you have, you most likely expect a licensed professional to offer you several solutions. Depending on the seriousness of your condition, they may offer you medication to help fight against whatever bacteria, virus, or other injury that you might have. In more serious circumstances, however, the problem may not be fully solved by taking medication. It might be necessary, or even wise, to undergo surgery to fix the problem.
Fear of surgery, for the most part, is unfounded. Surgeons are highly trained individuals with years of education and experience working in their respective fields. Most are very adept at correcting patient issues, and will offer sound advice in the case of an emergency. However, it would be a mistake to believe that all surgeons are perfect. Quite to the contrary; they are not.
In fact, when a doctor or surgeon makes a critical mistake, the consequences can be utterly catastrophic.
In the early spring of 2014, 13-year-old Jahi McMath was a young girl growing up just outside Oakland, California. Unfortunately, Jahi suffered from sleep apnea, which is a sleep disorder characterized by pauses in breathing or instances of shallow or infrequent breathing during sleep. Frustrated by their daughter’s trouble sleeping, Latasha and Marvin Winkfield brought Jahi to the UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital in Oakland. There, she received medical attention from the head of pediatrics, Dr. David Duran, who advised that Jahi undergo corrective surgery.
Although the surgery was not recommended for pediatric cases, the hospital staff insisted that they move forward with the risky surgery. Sadly, Jahi had an adverse reaction to the surgery and went into a vegetative state. When her parents asked what had gone wrong, Dr. Duran did not answer them. Instead, he yelled at them, and told them that Jahi’s brain and organs should be donated.
Angered and wracked with grief, the young girl’s parents filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against the Hospital for malpractice. The family is represented by Attorney Bruce Brusavich.