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Canadian Woman Filed Medical Malpractice Lawsuit over Alleged Misdiagnosis

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Fort McMurray, ABA medical malpractice lawsuit has been filed by a Canadian woman against a group of six doctors after they allegedly failed to properly diagnose a fracture in her foot, leading to permanent disability.

Karen Stuckless of Fort McMurray, Alberta, filed a $475,000 medical malpractice statement of claim resulting from alleged misdiagnosis after she suffered a fall October 13, 2007.

According to her statement of claim, which was summarized in the November 22 issue of the Edmonton Sun, Stuckless went to Northern Lights Health Center for a series of x-rays and was initially diagnosed with a sprained ankle. She was given Tylenol 3 for her pain and sent home.

When her "significant"' pain failed to diminish after eight days, she returned to Northern Lights Health Center to get another x-ray performed. Stuckless was allegedly told that no fracture or displacement showed up on the x-ray. She was again discharged, this time with a cast boot on her ankle.

It wasn't until November 9—almost a month after her fall—that Stuckless went to see her own family doctor, who advised her to get further x-rays taken. According to the statement of claim, a different doctor examined the most recent x-rays and concluded that Stuckless had, indeed, suffered a projected fracture in a bone in her foot. This doctor prescribed further therapy.

Four days later the patient returned to Northern Lights Health Center, where the cast boot was reapplied and she was advised to remain mobile. A follow-up examination two weeks later identified swelling in her left foot. Doctors at that time advised her to refrain from putting weight on the foot.

After two weeks, doctors told Stuckless that the fracture had healed. Physical therapy should commence, they said, and she should gradually increase her activities.

Stuckless was back at the hospital yet again two days before Christmas, complaining of ongoing pain, especially when bearing weight. According to the plaintiff, yet another series of x-rays were taken. The patient was then advised that contrary to previous statements, no evidence of bone healing could be found. A CT scan was arranged as well as a referral to an orthopedic surgeon.

Stuckless was eventually diagnosed with reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD) and now considers herself permanently disabled. Her statement of claim regarding her medical malpractice lawsuit was filed October 9 of this year.


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