Gair, Gair, Conason, Rubinowitz, Bloom, Hershenhorn, Steigman & Mackauf is a New York Plaintiff's personal injury law firm specializing in automobile accidents, construction accidents, medical malpractice, products liability, police misconduct and all types of New York personal injury litigation.

Articles Posted in Failure to Diagnose Cancer

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“ Lissy McMahon’s sister, the executrix of her Estate made this video to express her appreciation for the NY Legislature passing Laverne’s Law. Our partner, New York Medical Malpractice Attorney Jeffrey Bloom has been relentlessly pushing for Lavern’s Law to pass. He is the co-chair of the Medical Malpractice Committee of the New York State Trial lawyers Association and co-chair of LawPAC of New York-the political action committee of the Trial Lawyers.  Recently, the New York State Legislature passed Lavern’s Law.  Jeff represented Lissy McMahon, a single mother who discovered that doctors misdiagnosed her cancer after the statute of limitations had passed.  Jeff and Lissy fought together to help pass Lavern’s Law. Unfortunately, Lissy passed away before the law was passed leaving behind her 4 year old son Jack.  Jeff now represents her estate.

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New York Medical Malpractice Lawyer Jeff Bloom with client Lissy McMahonCancer patients who have been misdiagnosed by New York doctors or hospitals will now have a fairer chance to be compensated. Yesterday, the New York Senate finally passed the Lavern’s Law which is moving the starting date of the statute of limitations to the date of the discovery of the medical error instead of the date when the medical error was committed for cancer patients. The Assembly has also passed the law by a vote of 105-23. It will now be sent to The Governor to sign.

The original version of Lavern’s Law proposed to start the statute of limitations from the date of the discovery for all  medical malpractice cases  but a compromise had to be found with the Senate GOP.  Despite being a restricted version, the passage of this law is excellent news for many  cancer patients who were misdiagnosed but weren’t able to get compensation because the misdiagnosis was discovered too late.

Our partner, New York Medical Malpractice Attorney Jeffrey Bloom has been relentlessly pushing for Lavern’s Law to pass.  Jeff represented Lissy McMahon, a single mother who discovered that doctors misdiagnosed her cancer after the statute of limitations had passed.  Jeff and Lissy fought together to help pass Lavern’s Law. Jeff traveled to Albany to support the passage of the Law. Unfortunately, Lissy passed away before the law was passed leaving behind her 4 year old son Jack.

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Victims of medical malpractice in New York have 15 months to file a lawsuit against a public hospital and 2 and a half years  to sue a private hospital or a physician after a medical error occurred. This rule is unfair to the many patients who only discover that they have been the victim of a medical malpractice after the statute of limitations has passed. For example if a doctor fails to diagnose cancer, it can take several years until the misdiagnosis is discovered. The patient is then left without any possibility to sue and get compensated for the medical error. Our partner, New York Medical Malpractice Attorney Jeff Bloom has been instrumental in advocating for the passage of the law which is a proposal to have the statute of limitations start at the time of the discovery of the error. He fought for our client, Elissa McMahon in her crusade to get Lavern’s law passed. In 2012 Elissa McMahon went to Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City for a fibroid removal. At the time of the surgery, pathology slides from Lenox Hill Hospital clearly indicated that the patient had cancer but doctors failed to diagnose it. Two years later she went to a doctor after suffering from severe back pain. She was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. 6 months later she consulted with our firm and discovered that the statute of limitations had passed and that she was unable to sue.  Sadly, Elissa died from stage 4 metastatic cancer. Below is a video of Elissa McMahon in which she discusses her tragic situation with Jeffrey Bloom. Jeff traveled to Albany in support of Elissa and others in her situation to push for the passage of Lavern’s Law. Hopefully his efforts will now come to fruition. See more on Twitter @NYSTLA and on our previous blog. Jeffrey Bloom is the Co-chair of the Medical Malpractice Committee of the New York State Trial Lawyers Association as well as the Co-Chair of LAWPAC New York, the Trial Lawyers political action committee. In these rolls he has been instrumental in fighting for the passage of the “Discovery Rule.”

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Failure to diagnose breast cancer at an early stage or delay in treating breast cancer early can have deadly consequences. Early detection of the disease through regular screening such as mammogram is essential for every woman over 40 year old. According to Cancer.net, women who are diagnosed when the cancer is located only in the breast have an almost 100% chance to survive for at least 5 years. If the cancer is detected after it spread to the regional lymph nodes, the 5 year-survival rate is 85%. A woman diagnosed with breast cancer that spread to another part of her body has a 26% chance to survive more than 5 years.

Statistics also indicatewho is not getting mammogram that only 61% of breast cancers are diagnosed at an early stage. Unfortunately, despite campaigns such as the Breast Cancer Awareness Month that ended Yesterday,  too many women over 40 years old are still not getting regular mammogram.  29% of women who have health insurance and should be screened are still not doing it. Among women who do not have health insurance, as many as 68% of them are not getting mammograms. Not having an insurance is not an excuse for not getting regular mammograms. In every city, charitable organizations offer free screenings for women who can’t afford to pay for them. In New York our firm is sponsoring free mammography vans through the Judges and Lawyers Breast Cancer Alert.

FAILURE TO DIAGNOSE BREAST CANCER CAN BE MEDICAL MALPRACTICE

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In New York the statute of limitations for medical malpractice starts from the time the medical error occurred. Assemblywoman Helene Weinstein (D-Brooklyn) is sponsoring a bill that would start the statute of limitations from the time the medical error is discovered instead of the the time it occurred. The bill, named after Lavern Wilkinson, a mother who died of a curable form of lung cancer after doctors misdiagnosed her (see previous blog), has 38 Senate Sponsors , both Republican and Democrats according to Assemblywoman Weinstein. This is enough to pass as long as the Senate decides to take the bill to a vote this year. The time is ticking on the bill as there is only one week left before the session ends. Read more in New York CBS Local.

Our partner, New York Medical Malpractice Attorney Jeffrey Bloom is strongly supporting the bill. Jeff is representing Lissy MacMahon, a single mother of a 15 year old son who was recently diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. Lissy had a previous surgery in 2012 in a New York Hospital. At the time of the surgery, doctors failed to diagnose her cancer. When she visited our office, Lissy learned that she was unable to sue because the statute of limitations had passed despite the fact that she had just learned about her cancer.  Lavern’s Law if it passed would allow Lissy to commence her lawsuit and make sure she and her son are taken care of.  Jeff traveled to Albany to support Lissy and many others who could benefit from the passage of this law. Below is a video of Lissy that will be shown to all New York State legislators.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ot9MSGkcLbw

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jbOur partner, New York Medical Malpractice Attorney Jeff Bloom is helping our client Elissa McMahon in her crusade to get Lavern’s law passed (see previous post).  After she discovered that doctors in a New York hospital failed to diagnose cancer, Elissa McMahon was unable to bring a lawsuit because the statute of limitations had passed. In New York the statute of limitations for victims of medical malpractice starts at the time of the occurrence of the medical error. Lavern’s Law is a proposal to have the statute of limitations start at the time of the discovery of the error. This law would allow patients like our client, Elissa McMahon, to bring a lawsuit against the hospital which failed to diagnose her cancer. Most States in the US have similar laws. New York State is one of only six States to start the statute of limitations at the time of the occurrence of the error. Talking about Elissa McMahon’s case, Jeffrey Bloom told the NY Daily News “How could she possibly not have a right to bring a lawsuit when the statute of limitations ran (out) before she even knew she was sick?”

In 2012 Elissa McMahon went to Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City for a fibroid removal. At the time of the surgery, pathology slides from Lenox Hill Hospital clearly indicated that the patient had cancer but doctors failed to diagnose it. Two years later she went to a doctor after suffering from severe back pain. She was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. 6 months later she consulted with our firm and discovered that the statute of limitations had passed and that she was unable to sue. Our partner Jeffrey Bloom is now helping Elissa McMahon in her battle to change the law and get justice. If the law goes through in the next session Elissa McMahon, a 46 year old single mother of a teenage son, will be able to bring a lawsuit. If it doesn’t pass this session she will have to wait until next year. She has stage 4 metastatic cancer and told the News “Even if my son can’t benefit from this, there are other people in similar situations.”

Below is a video of Elissa McMahon in which she discusses her tragic situation with Jeffrey Bloom. Jeff traveled to Albany in support of Elissa and others in her situation to push for the passage of Lavern’s Law. It is a travesty that the Republican’s in the legislature have been blocking this law.

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renal mass

renal mass in a 3 year olds child

Failure to timely diagnose Denys-Drash syndrome can be medical malpractice that can lead to renal failure and ultimately death. Denys-Drash syndrom is a very rare congenital disorder that affects young children. There are only 150 known cases in the world therefore very little information is available for doctors to diagnose and treat this disorder.

What is known so far is that  90% of the children with this disorder develop a rare pediatric kidney cancer known as Wilms tumor. Undescended testes and severe proximal hypospadias are also associated with this disorder. The Journal of the American Academy of Physician Assistants (JAAPA) recently released an article describing the case of a 3 year old patient affected by this syndrome. The authors Shawn C. Smith Barry Chang and Laura Beth Fleming are all from the Cardon Children Medical Center in Mesa, AZ where the patient was admitted.  The article describe how the authors of the article diagnosed the disorder and which treatments were used to treat the patient. The complete article can be found here 

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CuomoThe law in New York State requires victims of medical malpractice to file their claim within 15 months after medical malpractice occurs at a public hospital and 2 1/2  years against a private hospital or physician. Lavern’s Law proposes to start the statute of limitations from the time a patient discovers the malpractice rather than from the time the medical malpractice occurs. Lavern’s Law is named after Lavern Wilkinson who died from a curable form of lung cancer after doctors at Kings County Hospital in Brooklyn, NYC, failed to tell her that a chest X-ray they took in 2010 showed a small, suspicious mass on her right lung and instead sent her back home with Motrin. Lavern only discovered that she had cancer when she was terminal. By that time, the statute of limitations had expired and she wasn’t able to sue the hospital for failure to diagnose lung cancer. She died leaving behind her a daughter who was severely autistic. The city settled Wilkinson’s lawsuit, for $625,000 the day she died, March 7, 2013. Medical malpractice experts said her case would have netted over $10 million had it not been for the statute of limitations. Yesterday Governor Cuomo gave his support to the law. Read more in the NY Daily News

 

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firefighterFirefighters are exposed on a regular basis to known carcinogens. A recent study by the The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) that includes data from 1988 to 2007 assessed the association between firefighters and the development of 32 different types of cancer. The study found that firefighters have a greater risk to develop certain types of cancers such as melanoma, acute myeloid leukemia, multiple myeloma, and cancers of the esophagus, prostate, brain, and kidney. Black and Hispanic firefighters, unlike white firefighters, were also found to have increased risks for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, chronic lymphocytic leukemia, chronic myeloid leukemia and cancers of the tongue, testis, and bladder. Read more here

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spotme-in-community-target-page-bannerFailure to diagnose skin cancer at an early stage can have deadly consequences.  People living in New York  will have plenty of opportunities to get a free skin cancer screening during the month of May which is National Skin Cancer Awareness Month.

Malignant Melanoma is the fastest growing cancer for men, and the second fastest growing cancer for women. If it is detected early when it hasn’t spread to the lymph nodes, the survival rate is 98%.  A yearly annual skin exam performed by a physician offers the best chance of an early diagnosis. Self-exams should also be performed every month. If you notice a change in an existing mole or discover a new one that look suspicious you should show it to a physician immediately.

Here is a list of places where you can get free skin cancer screenings in New York in May and June. For other States click here.