Soup Injection leads to medical malpractice wrongful death lawsuit
A medical malpractice wrongful death lawsuit was filed on behalf of Ilda Victor Maciel. Ilda Vitor Maciel, 88, of Rio de Janeiro, was admitted to Santa Casa de Barra Mansa hospital, having suffered a stroke which paralyzed one side of her body. Her family said she was showing signs of improvement. Maciel’s son said he even spoke with his mother and she seemed to be doing well considering the situation.
Just as she was beginning to show signs of improvement Maciel died after receiving an injection from a nurse. The medical malpractice wrongful death lawsuit filed against the hospital by her family claims that the nurse injected soup into the elderly woman’s veins instead of into her feeding tube. The hospital does not deny that this error happened, but maintain that it was not the cause of death. An autopsy, however, concluded that the soup injection was likely to have caused a pulmonary embolism which lead to Maciel’s death. According to Maciel’s daughter who was present during the injection, Maciel went into a seizure immediately after the shot was administered by medical staff and died 12 hours later.
The family of a deceased dialysis patient understands the pain that Ilda Vitor Maciel’s family is going through. They are suing a Florida nurse who accidentally gave him a deadly dose of a drug that induces paralysis, instead of an antacid.
79-year-old grandfather Richard Smith was admitted to the North Shore Medical Center after a local practitioner administering Smith’s routine dialysis expressed concern with his shortness of breath. While speaking with doctors at the hospital, Smith also complained of indigestion. Doctors then prescribed Pepcid, an over-the-counter antacid, to quell Smith’s stomach pains. What he was accidentally given, however, was Pancuronium, a muscle relaxer used to carry out lethal injections on death row inmates.
“The hospital killed my dad,” said Marc Smith of Miami, Fla., whose father went into cardiac arrest after the nurse’s mistake at North Shore Medical Center in Miami.
Richard Smith, who had a history of kidney disease, had been admitted to the ICU after a dialysis session where he experienced severe shortness of breath. The next day, July 30, 2010, he complained of an upset stomach, so the doctor prescribed the antacid. Uvo Ologboride, the nurse named in the lawsuit, had given Smith pancuronium. The drug, which is typically used during intubations, acts as a muscle relaxant and paralytic. In higher doses, pancuronium is used to administer lethal injections. Thirty minutes later, Smith was found unresponsive. Marc Smith came by to visit that morning, and found his dad “unconscious, unresponsive and on a respirator.” In addition to giving Smith the wrong medicine, the nurse also failed to check the labels of the medicine, scan the medication, and scan Smith’s patient identification bracelet. Uvo Ologboride, the nurse named in the lawsuit, had given Smith pancuronium. The drug, which is typically used during intubations, acts as a muscle relaxant and paralytic. In higher doses, pancuronium is used to administer lethal injections. Thirty minutes later, Smith was found unresponsive. Although doctors were able to revive Richard Smith, he was brain dead. He remained in a vegetative state until he died a month later.
The Smith family lawyer, Andrew Yaffa, told ABCNews.com, “This is the worst case of medical malpractice wrongful death lawsuit I have ever seen. The hospital just seems to be thumbing their nose to this family.”
A report from the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration demonstrated that with all the safeguards in place to prevent a patient from receiving the wrong medication, the nurse would have had to ignore nearly all of the protocol in place for administering drugs. In addition, the report says, the pharmacy wasn’t able to show any justification for storing pancuronium in that particular area of the hospital.
Specifically, the nurse “failed to look and read what medication he was taking … failed to scan to determine the right count for the medication, failed to match the patient’s ID with the scanned medication.”