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Student sues for $3 million after delayed diagnosis

A University of Oregon student has filed a medical malpractice lawsuit for a delayed meningitis diagnosis that resulted in her being hospitalized for two weeks. She is asking for $3 million due to her medical providers' alleged negligence.

Her story starts in mid-January 2015. She began to feel ill and was throwing up. She had a fever and sore throat. She was also congested and had a bad cough. She felt poorly enough to head to the doctor, and she went to the Oregon Medical Group clinic. There, she received a nasal swab to diagnose the flu. The tests came back negative, so the clinician, a physician's assistant, told her that she was suffering from a virus. She was told to get more rest and to drink lots of water.

When she began to feel worse, she went to a different medical clinic that night. There, she was diagnosed with meningococcal disease, or bacterial meningitis. This rapid disease spreads quickly and can be fatal if left without treatment. It affects the brain, spinal cord and blood stream.

She was taken to the Oregon Health & Science Hospital to start immediate treatment and stayed there for two weeks. As a result of the delay, she claims that she suffered septic shock. She claims that earlier diagnosis may have prevented the permanent damage to her lungs and heart she now suffers as well as the emotional distress and scarring from surgeries. She now struggles with swallowing and has sensitivity to medications. In total, her medical treatment cost $500,000.

Situations like this where people fall through the cracks could cost them their lives. Some medical conditions need to be identified and treated rapidly. If this happens to you, you may also have a case against your medical provider.

Source: The Register Guard, "UO student files $3 million lawsuit over delayed meningitis diagnosis during 2015 outbreak," Chelsea Gorrow, Jan. 13, 2017

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