Posted On: March 9, 2010 by Pennsylvania Personal Injury Attorney

Possible Prostate Case Error at Penn Hospital

The Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania reported a possible radiation error involving the treatment of a man for prostate cancer. According to this article in the Philadelphia Inquirer, a patient underwent a prostate brachytherapy procedure on Jan. 21 to implant 65 radioactive seeds to kill cancer cells in the acorn-size gland. On a follow-up scan on Feb. 23, doctors saw that the seeds were “outside the intended target.”

The incident is similar to problems at the Penn-run brachytherapy program at the Philadelphia VA Medical Center.

From February 2002 until June 2008, 97 veterans got incorrect radiation doses.

The article stated that the incident at Penn was reported to the state Department of Environmental Protection, which oversees the medical use of radioactive materials in Pennsylvania for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The incident may have been caused by a malfunction in a new ultrasound unit, which guides the needles used to place the radioactive seeds.

The problems at the Philadelphia VA raised questions about the Penn program’s quality.

The VA here treated 114 veterans with brachytherapy from 2002 to 2008, when problems surfaced and the program was shut down.

So far, 11 of the veterans have had recurrences of their cancer, and eight show signs of a possible return. Also, nine of the men had radiation injuries to their rectums, according to the VA’s latest tally.

When patients have been treated with substandard care by a doctor or healthcare provider and have suffered an injury or disability as a result, the patients have been the victim of medical malpractice. Misdiagnosis, failure to diagnose, surgical errors, prescription drug errors, birth injuries, failure to treat diseases, delay in treatment, and negligence are just a few examples of medical malpractice. People of all ages are at risk for medical malpractice, including children, adults, and the elderly.

Medical malpractice is a distressing situation, and the Philadelphia medical malpractice lawyers at Cherry, Fieger, and Marciano, LLP, will make the process as simple as possible for you. If you or a loved one has been the victim of medical malpractice in Pennsylvania, please contact Cherry, Fieger, and Marciano, LLP today for a free consultation with a Philadelphia PA medical malpractice attorney.