Medical Mishaps & Daffy Doctors

rynner2

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#3
"Implement" might have been a better word than "Tool", methinks...

(You know what people are like here, give them an inch and... Oh! I can't believe I just said that!)
 
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Anonymous

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#4
Medical Mishaps?

Every once in a while, a medical mishap will hit the media - usually regarding a case with a tragic conclusion.

On a lighter note - 'though still obviously a serious matter if followed through - there are those cases in which an averted error has its funny side...

...such as the one I was witness to a while back, in which a man had the wrong knee partially marked out for surgery, before his protests had the error corrected. Goodness knows what he'd have made of it later had the marking been performed after local or general anaesthetic!

It put me to thinking whether anyone else has a personal anecdote of a medical mishap or near-miss they would care to share with us?
Medical staff often work long, thankless hours, so I can't believe that errors of this nature are uncommon (scary thought 'though it is). Over to you...
 
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Anonymous

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#5
Well I can't say I've known this to happen personally but you constantly hear about it here in the States. Like the wrong leg is amputated, wrong kidney removed and such. One big medical boo-boo that happened to a celebrity named David Spade from Saturday Night Live had heart surgery on some valves I believe and the Doctors 'fixed' the wrong valves so he had to go through it all again..........crack his chest back open, etc. etc.......
 

rynner2

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#6
As a boy I cracked a bone in my wrist playing football (I was goalie). There was another boy in the X-ray department with a broken bone in his arm. After treatment, I had a plaster cast on up to my shoulder, while the other boy only had plaster on his forearm.

I often wonder whether the hospital mixed us up.
 

escargot

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#8
I was once in hospital after an accident. Late at night a medical-looking bloke came in the room and woke me up to have a drip put in. I refused, saying I hadn't been told I was having any such thing and it was a mistake. He thought I'd just chickened out and argued very politely with me about it. Suddenly he seemed to realise he had the wrong person, stammered a bit and left in a hurry. Wonder what I'd have had? And how bad the consequences for the person who did need the drip.........?

I worked on a ward with lots of throat cancer cases who had tracheostomies (i.e. the cancer & a bit more cut out of their throats.) One day I naughtily eavesdropped on a group of surgeons, one of whom was openly admitting that she'd been excising too little surrounding flesh, and consequently all her throaty patients had suffered relapses and died. So she'd decided to change her operating procedure somewhat...brrr.
 

TheBeast17

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#9
A husband of a friend of mine has a medical condition whereby all his organs are on the opposite side to normal, can't remember the name mind you, i'll look it up.

Anyway he had a major pain in his side, and the doctors decided that it was gall stones and he eventually went in for surgery, without having had an x-ray!!

They opened his up, and were naturally surprised that they couldn't find his gall bladder. So they sewed him back up and guess what they did?

Yep, they opened him up the otherside and removed his gall bladder, because that was what they were supposed to do.

So he now has two scars, one on each side of his body, and he still has the pain in his side because the side with the pain in it is the one they opened first. So the pain obviously wasn't his gallbladder.

Incidently he's had tests since this cock-up, and the doctors have decided that, in their medical opinion, they don't know the cause of his pain.:confused:
 
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Anonymous

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#10
In the 60's a work friend of my Mum's .. (who was a nurse and has since retired ) booked her toddler son into have a circumcision done, and left him in the ('not so' it turned out) capable hands of the hospital staff ... After the operation, when she was allowed to see him, the sister in charge of the ward told her that he would need to be fed lots of ice cream in the coming week to help him recover from the procedure. When the mother replied something like...'' I had no idea you had to do that when someone is circumcised....' they all realised that the poor little chap had, had his tonsils taken out by mistake instead !! At that I think the mother decided that enough was enough and dhe gave up on the idea all together - sounds like the little chap had a lucky escape to me !!
 
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Anonymous

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#11
Something similar happened to a friend of mine at Bronglais hospital in Aberystwyth; after spending a long, hot day out cycling my friend drank a ridiculous amount of water but didn't eat, and developed a pain in his abdomen from over-hydration and a lack of salt. He went to the hospital and the doctors decided he had appendicitis and wanted to operate on him! Thankfully he sneaked out of the ward while the nurses were busy and recovered at home without having had the op, but it does go to show that some doctors are a little too keen to whip out the scalpel.
Mind you, they do a wonderful job 99% of the time, so I've no real complaints!
 

rossba1

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#12
Beast- the condition is known as Kartageners syndrome. I was studying it a few weeks ago. Very interesing. Current thought is that the reversal of organs (which only happens in 50% of people with the syndrome) is due to the lack of properly functional cilia. In particular a type of moleular motor called a Dynamin. It's entirely possible to have the defective gene and not realise it because only 50% have this swapped over effect. What happens is that during development the polarity of the body is left to chance (50:50) rather than being strictly ordered.
 
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Anonymous

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#13
Does anyone know the name of the syndrome in which muscles, when damaged, are converted into bone?
 
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Anonymous

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#16
I don't know. Since I never even did 'O' level biology my medical knowledge is limited to items gleaned from the news and documentaries! This particular syndrome was the subject of a Horizon documentary about 18 months ago, and was probably one of the most disturbing things I've seen.
It's a rare syndrome, but the nub of it was that if the sufferer sustained any muscular damage (e.g. moderate bruising) then their white blood cells began to treat the damage but somehow got confused and replaced the muscle tissue with bone tissue. And it wasn't just restricted to the area of damaged - the entire muscle was replaced by bone, thereby rendering the limb pretty useless. It was very weird.
 

TheBeast17

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#17
Nondescript,

The condition is called Fibrodysplasia Ossicicans Progressivais or FOP.

It can be triggered by almost anything, a knock or fall, and the damaged muscle begins to literally become bone. People who suffer from this condition slowly start to freeze, until they can't move a muscle. They have to decide whether they will finish in a sitting position or a standing one. Must be a terrifying ordeal.

Find more info. on it here:

FOP
 
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Anonymous

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#18
Cheers, now I know who to direct my medical questions at in future!

Scary stuff though. Reading about all the strange things that can happen to a person makes me think twice about having kids at all...
 

marion

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#19
When my sister was nursing in the BRI in Bristol a white couple had a black baby after the mother had artificial insemination . It was put down in the 'mistakes' book as a drug error ! They had been trying to keep the fertility treatment a secret too.
The NHS keeps a lot of stuff quiet , for example a lot more people die of AIDS and BSE than the official numbers would suggest .
Marion
 
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Anonymous

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#20
Marion said:
The NHS keeps a lot of stuff quiet , for example a lot more people die of AIDS and BSE than the official numbers would suggest .
AIDS: It is possible for AIDS to go undiagnosed, as it wrecks the immune system so that you get infected easily. After infection, the first symtoms (I believe) is a very bad dose of a flu-like illness, so if this develops into fatal pneumonia the sufferer could die before anybody wonders if it could be something else. However, although this probably happened a lot in the past, such misdiagnosis is much less likely nowadays
BSE: Since humans don't get BSE, you are presumably referring to CJD. This is virtually impossible to diagnose before death; the first symptoms are depression and personality changes, followed by growing mental confusion. If the sufferer dies at this point - maybe through suicide - there will be no reason to check for CJD at autopsy. Also, in older people, the symptoms could easily be mistaken for Alzheimer's - again, no CJD checks will be made. So it is probable that the CJD figures are an underestimate.
It isn't likely that there is any deliberate suppression of the true figures going on - you couldn't suppress the fact of thousands of young people dying of an Alzheimers-like disease, for instance.
 
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Anonymous

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#22
Marion said:
When my sister was nursing in the BRI in Bristol a white couple had a black baby after the mother had artificial insemination . It was put down in the 'mistakes' book as a drug error ! They had been trying to keep the fertility treatment a secret too.
This sounds extremely unlikely - like a typical FOAF or UL.
For a start, the 'drug error' would have had to be precisely specified - name of drug, dosage, dates etc; with somebody carrying the can for it.
For another thing - no 'drug error' can make white parents produce a black child.
Thirdly, this could only have happened if the couple were having invitro treatment (where the egg or eggs are fertilised in the laboratory) or AID (artificial insemination by donor). Either way, there would have to have been a serious breakdown in procedures that allowed a mixup of either the eggs or the sperm.
Fourthly, if it really was artificial insemination, no drugs would have been involved, so there would have been no opportunity for a 'drug error'.
Fifthly, the resultant legal case would have made the news!
 

marion

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#23
I'm pretty sure she saw the book with the notes in it , might be wrong . The doctors were supposed to have used sperm from a black donor by accident and the baby was mixed race , could be a UL they always seem true when you hear them first !
As for the AIDS/CJD thing , I was watching the news with her about CJD cases in our area and the newsreader stated only one case had been confirmed yet my sister knew of at least three other confirmed cases in her hospital alone , she also said it was not uncommon for people with AIDS who die to have the cause of death as cancer , pnumonia etc with no mention of AIDS , this affecting official figures .
Marion
 
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Anonymous

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#24
My dad has had a false eye since he was 13. He has been with the same family doctor all his life. The doctors an eye specialist. My dad was having alot of pain with both of his eyes so he went in for a checkup. The "eye specialist" GP looked at them both and pointed out my dads false eye. He said "This one looks abit lazy. Hows your sight from that eye" !!!!!!! My dad could'nt stop laughing.
 
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Anonymous

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#25
Marion said:
I'm pretty sure she saw the book with the notes in it , might be wrong . The doctors were supposed to have used sperm from a black donor by accident and the baby was mixed race , could be a UL they always seem true when you hear them first !
As for the AIDS/CJD thing , I was watching the news with her about CJD cases in our area and the newsreader stated only one case had been confirmed yet my sister knew of at least three other confirmed cases in her hospital alone , she also said it was not uncommon for people with AIDS who die to have the cause of death as cancer , pnumonia etc with no mention of AIDS , this affecting official figures .
Marion
So what infection protocols did the nursing staff use with these "They've got Aids, but let's pretend they've got cancer" patients then? And given that treatment for cancer is drastically different than treatment for AIDs, how did they explain the treatment regime to clued-up relatives who were wondering why the patient wasn't being given that treatment that makes your hair fall out? And what was the reaction of the hospital's ethics commitee to this flagrant medical deceit? And exactly how were the CJD cases confirmed, given the difficulty in diagnosis?
Maybe your sister had better come on here and explain a few things.
 

rynner2

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#26
I can see Annasdottir would make a fearsome Matron!

(Do they have Matrons anymore? Probably called 'Ward Nursing Staff Supervisor' or something equally idiotic nowadays.)
 

intaglio

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#28
They're Senior Nursing Officers now, their role is administrative and they no longer have a say in patient care/treatment.

Annasdottir - If an AIDS patient has cancer you treat them for cancer, if pneumonia - treat the pneumonia and so on. Aids medication interferes with the clinical regimes needed to treat illnesses contracted during Aids. Causes of death that go to the Registrar of deaths is usually the proximal cause unless the police, coroner or family request an autopsy or a fuller statement on the certificate. If the root cause was put on the Certificate there'd be a lot of certificates with 'cigarettes', asbestos and alcohol on them.
 
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Anonymous

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#29
Thanks for clearing that one up, Intaglio. So the AIDs statistics obviously can't be based on death certificates then.
But I'mn still waiting for my daffodil.
 
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