Meningitis Lawsuit Attorneys Representing Those in Western Pennsylvania
Meningitis is the name given to conditions involving the swelling of the membranes that cover the brain. These membranes, known as the meninges, protect the brain. The swelling is usually the result of an infection, either bacterial or viral. However, there are other causes such as injury, cancer or some drugs.
It is important for a doctor to know exactly what is causing the swelling of the meninges in order to prescribe the correct treatment. A misdiagnosis can be as bad as no diagnosis at all if treatment if medication is given for the wrong type of meningitis. Moreover, it is essential to determine the type of meningitis quickly, as the disease often progresses rapidly.
How Our Law Firm Helps After a Meningitis Misdiagnosis
At the Pittsburgh law firm of Berger & Lagnese, LLC, we help patients and families whose lives were devastated with meningitis that was untreated or misdiagnosed and treated incorrectly. Not only do we help individuals and families seek justice and compensation for their harm done to them by medical negligence, we also send a message to the medical community that such mistakes must not happen.
Speed is Important When Diagnosing Meningitis
In order to make a quick diagnosis, doctors must be alert to the possibility of meningitis. Even people who have been vaccinated against the most common causes of the disease can still develop meningitis, as immunizations do not protect against all causes of the disease. Treatment delays can allow the bacteria or virus to enter the bloodstream, causing sepsis (blood poisoning) that leads to organ failure.
Common Symptoms of Meningitis
The symptom of meningitis, which appears most commonly among young people, include:
- Stiff neck
- Sensitivity to bright light
- Severe headaches
- Nausea or vomiting
Symptoms can develop three to seven days after exposure to the bacteria or virus.
Treatment of Meningitis
Treatment with antibiotics should begin right away if a doctor even suspects meningitis. Bacterial meningitis becomes fatal rapidly. Even if antibiotics are given in a timely manner, disability or even death could occur if the damage to the brain and other organs progressed too far. If tests of cerebrospinal fluid later reveal that the symptoms have another cause, doctors can administer the correct treatment. However, waiting for test results to confirm the cause of meningitis can be fatal.
Risk Factors for Meningitis
Medical personnel should suspect meningitis when patients present with the symptoms above and have certain risk factors, such as young age, recent travel to countries where meningitis is common, residence in group settings such as dormitories or other institutions, or having conditions such as HIV, or lacking a spleen.
Contact Our Western Pennsylvania Law Firm
If you believe that you were injured or a loved one was injured or died because of a delayed diagnosis of meningitis, contact us. Learn how our lawyers can help you. Remember, there is no attorney’s fee until we win your case.