Articles Posted in PROFESSIONAL MALPRACTICE

November 7, 2009 – Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, the renowned Los Angeles hospital, has recently disclosed that 206 patients had received radiation overdoses over an 18 month period in 2008 and 2009. The overdoses occurred while radiologists were administering CT brain perfusion scans, a procedure used to aid in the diagnosis and treatment of strokes. Cedars Sinai Logo.gif

Apparently in February 2008 Cedars-Sinai radiologists overrode the default settings on a CT scanner used for the brain scans, hoping to obtain clearer data. Due to the changed settings, patients received doses up to 8 times the normal dose of 0.5 Gray for a brain perfusion scan. A Gray is a measured unit of emitted radiation.

The overdoses went undetected until August 2009 when a patient contacted the hospital to report patchy hair loss. No other patient had previously reported any symptoms from the exposure. According to the Food and Drug Administration, because the problem went undetected for so long, patients may be at an increased risk of long term effects from radiation exposure.

Continue reading

October 15, 2009 – Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, California admitted Monday
CT Scanner.jpgthat a mistake in default settings on a CT scanner used to perform brain scans on patients resulted in an increase in the amount of radiation emitted by the machine. The mistake occurred in February, 2008 when the hospital changed its protocol for scans used to diagnose strokes.

A specialized type of scan, called a CT brain perfusion scan, is used to diagnose strokes by detecting disruptions to the flow of
CT_head_slice.jpgblood to the brain. Doctors apparently decided to override the default settings of the scanner in order to get better data. Changing the settings increased the amount of radiation used by the scanner.

However, as a result of the change, radiation levels were eight times higher than was believed. Although the machine was used for other types of scans, it apparently only affected potential stroke victims because the settings were only changed for the brain perfusion scan.

Continue reading


docsThe Massachusetts Appeals Court has reversed a Superior Court ruling reinstating a medical professional malpractice complaint, which had been dismissed for lack of service, but reinstated over one year later on a Motion to Vacate Judgment under Mass. Rules of Civil Procedure Rule 60(b).

The original complaint had been filed within the statute of limitations, but not served within the following ninety (90) days as required under the Mass. Rules of Civil Procedure, Rule 4(j). Counsel for the Plaintiff had sought and obtained not less than five (5) extensions from the Court, but still was unable to effect service.

The medical malpractice action was filed against the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Inc. and two of its physicians, alleging their failure to diagnose cystic fibrosis during care and treatment of him up to and including December 3, 2001.

Plaintiff’s attorney filed an initial complaint and then repeatedly sought the Court’s permission to delay filing “a more detailed” complaint. Other excuses followed resulting in a total of six extensions. However, the complaint never got served and the Complaint was dismissed.

Thirteen months later, Plaintiff’s counsel filed an ex parte motion to vacate the judgment, which was allowed. Service was then effected, and Defendants filed motions to reconsider the allowance of the Rule 60(b) motion, which vacated the judgment. The motions were denied, and the defendants appealed.

Continue reading

Keith L. Miller is a Boston civil trial attorney licensed to practice in Massachusetts and New York. He has been litigating in state and federal courts in Massachusetts, New York, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont for nearly thirty years. He graduated from Yale University in 1976 and from University of Virginia Law School in 1980. He began his legal career in Paris, France and is fluent in French. In 1981 he returned to the U.S. and opened his own law practice in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He spent several years in the late 1980’s with a boutique Boston litigation firm, where he handled all the firm’s personal injury work. In 1987, he left the firm to reopen his own practice and has maintained his own law practice ever since.

While Keith L. Miller has trial experience in many practice areas (including criminal, divorce and probate), his primary focus has been civil trial practice, with an emphasis on plaintiffs’ personal injury and products liability claims. Other practice areas include insurance bad faith, legal malpractice, construction law and general commercial litigation, representing both plaintiffs and defendants.

Keith L. Miller brings a unique approach to business litigation. Unlike most firms, which bill hourly fees for services and demand large up front retainers, he is often prepared to represent claimants on a contingent fee basis, receiving payment only upon a successful recovery by trial or settlement.

While not every claim is appropriate for contingent fees, Keith L. Miller is prepared to review and evaluate potential claims at no initial cost to the client, and when appropriate, will enter into fee agreements contingent at least in part on the success of the case. This permits litigants to prosecute or defend claims knowing from the outset what it will cost to proceed with a claim.

The key to success in litigation, and in particular contingent or fixed fee cases, is objective and realistic early evaluation of the merits of a claim. This requires cooperation from the client in providing all the facts and producing all the relevant documents from the outset. There should be no surprises after the commencement of an action.

Continue reading

This is the Boston Accident Injury Blog, written by Attorney Keith L. Miller, a Boston trial lawyer, with over twenty-five years of experience practicing law and trying case in the Boston area and throughout New England. I have started this Blog with two purposes in mind: first to provide persons with legal problems with information about what they can do to recover for injuries and damages caused by the conduct or misconduct of others, and second, to try to provide information to other lawyers about developments in the law in Massachusetts and elsewhere.

952313_gavel.jpg

The Blog will attempt to inform and educate persons and businesses about their rights and their right of access to the court system when they need to redress wrongs, breaches or other injustices caused by others, and also to provide a forum to review and analyze recent decisions from state and federal courts, which involve interesting fact patterns and/or provide incite as to the present state of the law in Massachusetts, and elsewhere,

I will also try to describe some of my areas of practice, including summary descriptions of cases of interest, which my firm has handled in the past. Today, I will begin with a brief discussion of LEGAL MALPRACTICE.

LEGAL MALPRACTICE SUMMARY

To err is human, but attorneys are not immune from the consequences of mistakes made in the course of representation of a client. Most attorneys carry malpractice insurance for this express purpose. Keith L. Miller has represented clients with claims against attorneys who have represented them in cases, but those attorneys have made errors resulting in monetary damages.

Continue reading