Radiologist Testifies In John Ritter ...

Radiologist Testifies In John Ritter Death Lawsuit

There are 7 comments on the KNBC Los Angeles story from Feb 28, 2008, titled Radiologist Testifies In John Ritter Death Lawsuit. In it, KNBC Los Angeles reports that:

A radiologist accused of not alerting actor John Ritter about his enlarged aorta testified Wednesday, KNBC's Ted Chen reported.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at KNBC Los Angeles.

Mr Ed

United States

#1 Mar 3, 2008
What do lawyers know about enlarged aortas? Do people realize that the money will come out of their health care?
the doctor

Los Angeles, CA

#2 Mar 3, 2008
once we get doctors that dont make mistakes we will all be safe. Unfortunately we keep making people into doctors and people make mistakes. One mistake people make is they think medicine is an exact science. you cant always be right.
If he had been warned about his enlarged aorta ( if it had been outside normal variation) he would have been advised to take it easy, his series would have been too strenuous, he would not have had any future earnings.
disheartened doc

Philadelphia, PA

#3 Mar 5, 2008
This is why defensive medicine exists. Physicians have no qualms about doing thousands of unnecessary tests (some of which have serious complications), because the risk of getting sued for not doing a test is too high. Only in America where citizens who can't afford their mortgage payments or their health care decide to make things more expensive.
Zulu Warrier

Los Angeles, CA

#4 Mar 7, 2008
disheartened doc wrote:
This is why defensive medicine exists. Physicians have no qualms about doing thousands of unnecessary tests (some of which have serious complications), because the risk of getting sued for not doing a test is too high. Only in America where citizens who can't afford their mortgage payments or their health care decide to make things more expensive.
Amen to that.
Another opinion

United States

#5 Mar 13, 2008
There are two questions here: 1) What is a life worth?(a philosophical, not medical, question); and 2) What is medical malpractice?

1) Value of a life? Who knows? What value do you put on your own? How much life insurance do you carry? Expected lifetime earnings is commonly used in law to provide a practical answer to the question.

2) Medical malpractice? Ans: Failing to follow standard of care.

Consider a hypothetical 50-something year old man who has a medical checkup with X-rays. His aorta is enlarged. It doesn't have to be an aneurysm to be 'enlarged'. The standard of care is to make the observation and inform the patient that he should have a repeat exam at some reasonable interval. Six months, a year, whatever. Also, the patient knows that, if he gets chest pain, it would be helpful for him to tell the emergency room doctors, so they would get started down the right pathway on Ddx MI vs Aneurysm. The treatments are different.

Two years later this same man, nobody in particular, gets chest pain. The standard of care is to see a chest Xray before starting anticoagulation. Heparin and/or other 'blood thinners' may kill an aneurysm patient.

Malpractice is failing to follow the standard of care. You figure it out.

These practices are not 'defensive medicine'. They are just the standards of care.

Sorry to offer a dose of reality into the spirited discussion.

signed,

another opinion
realistic

Los Angeles, CA

#6 Mar 19, 2008
1st of all i feel terrible for this woman who lost the love of her life, and the children who lost their beloved father. however, people need to realize that the drs did everything they could do to save john ritter. they wanted him to live, not die! his condition is very hard to diagnose and is very rare. im so sorry that he has passed away, but for his wife to sue to 67 million $ is outrageous! it sound like she and her attorneys wanted to kill the drs so they would be dead too. and look at the difference. the drs were trying to save the man who died. but she and her attorneys want to kill the drs maliciously. thats a huge difference. i can understand her being angry that her man was taken from her so young, but to be malicious wont solve anything. not to mention the mere fact that she and her family are already millionaires, and she was given 14 million in settlements which is more than enough to start an enourmous foundation for john ritter. why the extreme greed? is that what mr. ritter would want to see the mother of his children doing? should we be teaching our children to bleed everyone dry even when they are trying to help?
also, this has turned out to be a congenital disorder for which his brother has now been diagnosed. unfortunately some people have congenital anomalies and these anomalies are not the drs faults. the drs did everything they could do, but his aneurysm was going to burst no matter what. so why do we expect all drs to have the abilities of God to save everyones lives? drs are people too. and these drs tried their best. they have worked harder than many of us could ever imagine. lets give these 2 guys a break and be grateful they tried so hard.
Rad

Grandville, MI

#7 Jun 16, 2008
Another opinion wrote:
There are two questions here: 1) What is a life worth?(a philosophical, not medical, question); and 2) What is medical malpractice?
1) Value of a life? Who knows? What value do you put on your own? How much life insurance do you carry? Expected lifetime earnings is commonly used in law to provide a practical answer to the question.
2) Medical malpractice? Ans: Failing to follow standard of care.
Consider a hypothetical 50-something year old man who has a medical checkup with X-rays. His aorta is enlarged. It doesn't have to be an aneurysm to be 'enlarged'. The standard of care is to make the observation and inform the patient that he should have a repeat exam at some reasonable interval. Six months, a year, whatever. Also, the patient knows that, if he gets chest pain, it would be helpful for him to tell the emergency room doctors, so they would get started down the right pathway on Ddx MI vs Aneurysm. The treatments are different.
Two years later this same man, nobody in particular, gets chest pain. The standard of care is to see a chest Xray before starting anticoagulation. Heparin and/or other 'blood thinners' may kill an aneurysm patient.
Malpractice is failing to follow the standard of care. You figure it out.
These practices are not 'defensive medicine'. They are just the standards of care.
Sorry to offer a dose of reality into the spirited discussion.
signed,
another opinion
I agree with evrything you said except for the following statement: "These practices are not 'defensive medicine'. They are just the standards of care."

The standard of care is based on numerous things: medical research, available medical resources and medico-legal considerations. Defensive medicine is part of the standard of care. In the community where I live the standard of care for someone with a history of migraines who comes to the ER with a headache is to get a CT of the brain to make sure that the patient doesn't have something other than his usual migraine.

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