Pulmonary Embolisms and Why They Can Be Fatal: Portland & Bend Medical Malpractice Lawyers

Understanding Pulmonary Embolisms: Portland & Bend Medical Malpractice Lawyer Explains Why They Can Be Fatal


A pulmonary embolism, or PE, is a blood clot in your lungs which usually comes from a blood clot in your legs known as deep vein thrombosis or DVT.  A PE is a medical emergency and must be quickly treated.  This is because there are very dangerous and potentially fatal emergencies.  According to the Centers for Disease Control, a PE is instantly fatal in 25% of all cases.  Of the other approximately 900,000 Americans that have a PE, about another 100,000 will die from the PE.  Those that pass away due to a PE are those who generally receive delayed care.  This delayed care could be from missing the signs and symptoms of a PE, difficulty getting to the hospital, or they did get to the hospital but did not receive prompt and competent medical care.  These individuals are the ones who may have a Portland medical malpractice claim.


Knowing the Signs of a Pulmonary Embolism


It is imperative for a patient to know the warning signs of a PE.  The most common symptoms include the following:


  • Shortness of breath (most common and almost always occurs);
  • Chest pain like a heart attack, but not quite the intensity or same location;
  • Coughing – starting to cough for no reason, and there is blood in that cough;
  • Fever and mild cold/flu like symptoms;
  • Leg pain, swelling, redness, and otherwise irritation which is due to the fact that most PEs are the result of deep vein thrombosis or DVT;
  • Heartbeat issues, such as rapid, irregular, fluttering, or other abnormal symptoms;
  • Lightheadedness, sweating, dizziness, and similar symptoms; and
  • Many other symptoms or signs.


If you have any of these signs, get to a hospital for immediately treatment.


Getting Competent Medical Care: When Portland Medical Malpractice Injuries You


Once you present to the hospital, it is up to healthcare providers to properly triage you and immediately treat you.  With a PE, the longer that you are not treated the longer that tissue is being damaged or destroyed, and the higher the risk of wrongful death.  In many cases, a PE can simply be diagnosed with a blood test that indicates there is clotting in your blood.  Another test can also easily determine the location of your blood clot through an imaging study (CTPA).


However, any times healthcare providers—especially new residents or untrained, inexperienced, and poorly skilled providers—may confuse the signs of a PE with that of a heart attack or stroke, which are both more dangerous and medical emergencies.  But when a heart attack and a stroke are ruled out through testing, unfortunately many times healthcare providers will release the patient instead of testing for a PE.  This is a big mistake and a death sentence.


It can also be Portland medical malpractice.  This is because a healthcare provider is held to the standard of a reasonably prudent provider in similar circumstances with similar training.  In a situation like this, a reasonably prudent healthcare provider would continue to test for a PE.  If a healthcare provider fails to test for a PE, it may be a breach of the duty owed to you.  If you suffer injuries due to this breach, such as loss of function of one lung, vision damage, or you are permanently disabled due to the PE, you may be entitled to all causes caused by the breach.


Victims of a Misdiagnosed or Delay Diagnosed PE Should Call Us Today


Did you have a PE misdiagnosed?  Did you suffer serious injury after waiting in a waiting room for a long time after telling the triage nurse you thought you had a PE, or any of the above symptoms?  Did you wait hours to see an emergency doctor?  If this may have happened to you in Central Oregon, Deschutes County, Salem, Portland, Eugene, Gresham, Hillsboro, Medford, and any other city, including Bend, Oregon where our main law office is located, please call Kuhlman Law, LLC by dialing (541) 385-1999 to learn what your rights to compensation you may have.  You may also contact us using our easy and convenient “contact us” box at the bottom of our website.  If we accept your case, we will conduct a thorough investigation to get you the answers you deserve, all for free.  There is no risk, and you only pay us if we recover compensation for you.

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