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Doctor mistakes pregnancy for ear problem


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#1 Guest_zeus359_*

Posted 13 November 2012 - 12:05 PM

A Melbourne woman has launched a Supreme Court action against a doctor who she claims misdiagnosed her as having inner-ear problems when she was actually seven months pregnant.


www.essentialbaby.com.au/pregnancy/pregnancy-symptoms/doctor-sued-after-mistaking-pregnancy-for-ear-condition-20121115-29dlp.html

Hmmm would be interesting to see what actually went on. If she presented with nausea and dizziness and a pregnancy test ruled out pregnancy & if she thought she couldn't be pregnant, then I can't see why the doctor would pursue it any more.

Edited by EBmel, 15 November 2012 - 10:08 AM.
(changed to EB link)


#2 Fanny McPhail

Posted 13 November 2012 - 12:10 PM


QUOTE
The damages claim includes cover for medical expenses and the cost of raising the child.


Maybe I'm not litigous enough I can't understand how the doctor is liable for the above unless the Doctor impregnanted her.

The patient had sex, one of the side-effects of sex is pregnancy. Really not the doctors fault.

#3 EsmeLennox

Posted 13 November 2012 - 12:27 PM

I imagine the argument will be that she found out too late to terminate so was stuck with no choice but to raise the child.

#4 sarkazm76

Posted 13 November 2012 - 12:36 PM

Doesn't her admission she loves her son to bits kinda work against that argument though?

#5 HerringToMarmalade

Posted 13 November 2012 - 12:39 PM

QUOTE (Jemstar @ 13/11/2012, 01:27 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I imagine the argument will be that she found out too late to terminate so was stuck with no choice but to raise the child.


But did she originally go to the doctor within the time frame for termination? If the first appointment was already too late, then surely it wouldn't have made a difference whether she found out then or later in terms of termination.

#6 Rosiebird

Posted 13 November 2012 - 02:11 PM

I may have to change my opinion on social abortion if she wins this case of "wrongful birth" with a healthy child.

#7 EsmeLennox

Posted 13 November 2012 - 07:50 PM

Totally her admission that she wouldn't be without the child goes against it, I have no idea when she first presented to the gp, I am just suggesting what the  argument might be. I would also ask why it took her so long to poas with the symptoms she had. Personal responsibility I reckon.

#8 MrsLexiK

Posted 13 November 2012 - 07:54 PM

QUOTE (Jemstar @ 13/11/2012, 01:27 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I imagine the argument will be that she found out too late to terminate so was stuck with no choice but to raise the child.

Adoption? Meh Slater and Gordon have taken this on, says enough for me.

#9 imamumto3

Posted 13 November 2012 - 07:59 PM

QUOTE (MrsLexiK @ 13/11/2012, 08:54 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Adoption? Meh Slater and Gordon have taken this on, says enough for me.

this was my thoughts too

#10 Rosiebird

Posted 13 November 2012 - 08:05 PM

QUOTE (Jemstar @ 13/11/2012, 12:27 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I imagine the argument will be that she found out too late to terminate so was stuck with no choice but to raise the child.


She had a few choices along the way...abstinence, condoms, the pill, implanon, mirena, the morning after pill, tracking her cycles to see if she missed a period, pregnancy tests from the chemist...
I think if she wins a wrongful birth suit she should lose custody of the child.

#11 namie

Posted 13 November 2012 - 08:26 PM

QUOTE (Jemstar @ 13/11/2012, 08:50 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I would also ask why it took her so long to poas with the symptoms she had. Personal responsibility I reckon.

That's what I think too. Why have four visits to a doctor for a blood test referral before peeing on a stick? I'd rather spend $13 on a two-pack of tests than spend $70 on each doctors visit if I was missing my period.

It does seem odd to diagnose an inner-ear problem given the missing periods, but the story doesn't go into enough details, there's obviously more to it.

Will be interesting to see what the outcome is.

#12 EsmeLennox

Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:07 PM

QUOTE (MrsLexiK @ 13/11/2012, 05:54 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Adoption? Meh Slater and Gordon have taken this on, says enough for me.



QUOTE (rosiebird @ 13/11/2012, 06:05 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
She had a few choices along the way...abstinence, condoms, the pill, implanon, mirena, the morning after pill, tracking her cycles to see if she missed a period, pregnancy tests from the chemist...
I think if she wins a wrongful birth suit she should lose custody of the child.


Agree.

The thing that I thought was imagine having to explain the lawsuit to your child when they were older???

#13 adl

Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:16 PM

Yes S&G....let's just clear this bit up...you can't sue for having a wrongful birth on healthy child...courts in Australia refuse to go there....not really sure why these law firms keep trying it on...

This won't win  them any favours??? Must have been a slow day at the firm now that they  aren't fielding questions about Julia's employment there   rolleyes.gif

Edited by adl, 13 November 2012 - 09:17 PM.


#14 Froger

Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:39 PM


Yes, I think you can sue for wrongful birth. Except perhaps where legislation prevents it.  I think you mean wrongful life? I think wrongful life is currently not recognised in Australia.

I hardly think she would lose her child? Why would she? That is the whole point of suing isn't it? To have the funds to raise the child. If the child was automatically removed in such a case, no point to suing.

And what's wrong with Slater and Gordon? Just wondering.

#15 FeralZombieMum

Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:40 PM

Apparently the doctor did do a pregnancy test, but not the blood tests.

QUOTE
A statement of claim by Slater & Gordon alleges after an initial urine test was negative, Dr Mitchell failed on three more occasions to send the woman for a blood test, which would have confirmed the pregnancy.



These 2 following quotes are confusing - did she discover the pregnancy test via ultrasound or via doing her own HPT at 7 months?
QUOTE
"When the ultrasound guy said, 'Congratulations, you're 29 weeks pregnant', I just completely flipped out. I only had two months to work out what I was going to do, how I was going to look after him.

QUOTE
The woman said she did a home pregnancy test in August 2009, when she started putting on weight.
http://www.news.com.au/national/doctor-sue...1-1226515375126

I was around her age when I had my first child. I think if you've had sex and then have those symptoms she'd experienced, then surely you'd be asking the doctor to do more tests to rule it out? I certainly knew by those symptoms what had happened - and with home pregnancy tests being so accessible and so much information available, especially online, you have to wonder why she didn't do a test herself at a much sooner date?

Edited by ZombieMum, 13 November 2012 - 09:54 PM.


#16 Milamum09

Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:48 PM

QUOTE (ZombieMum @ 13/11/2012, 07:40 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Apparently the doctor did do a pregnancy test, but not the blood tests.




These 2 following quotes are confusing - did she discover the pregnancy test via ultrasound or via doing her own HPT at 7 months?


http://m.news.com.au/VIC/pg/0/fi1784121.htm

I was around her age when I had my first child. I think if you've had sex and then have those symptoms she'd experienced, then surely you'd be asking the doctor to do more tests to rule it out? I certainly knew by those symptoms what had happened - and with home pregnancy tests being so accessible and so much information available, especially online, you have to wonder why she didn't do a test herself at a much sooner date?


I am guessing she found out she was pregnant from POAS but didn't know just how far along until ultrasound.


#17 B.feral3

Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:52 PM

Fingers crossed she looses.

I'm angry at her for wasting 2 minutes of my time that I'll never get back just reading about her pathetic lawsuit. Hopefully if the courts feel she is wasting their time, they'll do what I can't do and charge her for it.

#18 FeralZombieMum

Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:55 PM

QUOTE (Milamum09 @ 13/11/2012, 10:48 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I am guessing she found out she was pregnant from POAS but didn't know just how far along until ultrasound.

Ahhh that would make sense. ddoh.gif




#19 libbylu

Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:55 PM

You would think the doctor would be more astute.
My friend recently had no idea she was pregnant as she has irregular periods and it just didn't occur to her.   She had been having terrible headaches and though she was dying of a brain tumour!  The doctor worked it out fairly quickly though, and she was 11 weeks along.


#20 namie

Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:59 PM

The more I think about it the more I don't understand her reasoning for suing - apart from as a money grab.

If the doctor had misdiagnosed the ear infection and given medication which then harmed the baby leaving him with a disability, then I could understand why she'd sue. Her medical expenses and care for the child would potentially be substantially higher than they would be for children without a disability.

But going off the information I've read, she seems to have found out she was pregnant at some point, which most people do, prior to the healthy baby's arrival and was administered medication after the doctor's test also came back negative. I don't see the problem.

I wasn't sent off for blood tests after getting a positive pregnancy test because my GP trusted that the since they're generally 99% accurate, if it said I was pregnant then I was. I assume that in the reverse, if I told him my test was negative, he'd believe that and start investigating other causes for the dizziness etc.

Although, since we were TTCing I did POAS 3 times to be sure, lol! If you're not trying and not expecting perhaps one negative is enough to convince you you're not pregnant?

#21 adl

Posted 14 November 2012 - 05:55 AM

S&G are well known for class actions, and sensational litigation like this

Yes what I meant was that the courts will not put a price on a healthy child like this woman is attempting...what's your damage? Your loss? There are no special medical or other circumstances except she had sex, got pregnant and there was a delay etc on diagnosis? Loads of people don't find out they are pg till late in gestation, they don't run off to sue?

Already there has been some outrage here...

It's a grab on the doctors indemnity insurance And headlines , I do feel sorry for the child...no mention of the father but surely he has some say in this or what's the story behind that? No child support?

#22 Rosiebird

Posted 14 November 2012 - 09:13 AM

QUOTE (libbylu @ 13/11/2012, 09:55 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
You would think the doctor would be more astute.
My friend recently had no idea she was pregnant as she has irregular periods and it just didn't occur to her.   She had been having terrible headaches and though she was dying of a brain tumour!  The doctor worked it out fairly quickly though, and she was 11 weeks along.


The doctor did a pregnancy test! It was negative. Unless your friend's GP did a pregnancy test that was negative and then retested days or weeks later, I can't see how the two situations are comparable.

#23 PrincessPeach

Posted 14 November 2012 - 09:23 AM

I'm still confused - with the HCG levels, which is what the HPT measure, I was told that those levels peak at around 10 weeks & then decrease again?

If so, then I would assume that if a HPT taken at 29 weeks shows up positive, then surely one of the 3 the dr did earlier would have come up positive as well?

Or have I got that all completely wrong & the HCG levels increase constantly until birth...

#24 Guest_zeus359_*

Posted 14 November 2012 - 09:39 AM

Doctors only have to investigate the presenting complaint don't they?  It seems kind of like going in to the doctor's with a broken arm, and then suing because they later did not diagnose your pregnancy.

#25 TobiasFLK

Posted 14 November 2012 - 09:50 AM

This sounds very much like  a Jodie Picoult novel.





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