While rare, occurring in less than 3 patients per 10,000 hospital admissions, a Spinal Epidural Abscess (SEA) can cause devastating and permanent neurologic damage.
As shown in the illustration below, a SEA is a collection of pus-type infections located between the dura (the spinal cord’s outer covering) and the bones of the spine (vertebrae). SEAs are most often located in the middle and lower areas of the spine. SEAs are typically caused by a bacterial infection, such as Staphylococcus Aureus, that originates on the skin, throat, or mouth. As the pus builds up, it will fill the space between the spinal cord and the spine’s bones. As the pus expands, it can compress the spinal cord, causing the patient to experience neurologic symptoms.
Essentially, a SEA is an infection inside of the spine. While the condition is treatable if diagnosed early, if the diagnosis is delayed, a SEA often will result in severe nerve damage and, in some cases, paralysis.
SEAs can develop at any age. However, most people who develop a SEA are between ages 30 and 60. Men more than women have a higher statistical chance of developing a SEA. In addition to age and male gender, the other risk factors for SEAs are diabetes, MRSA infections, infection of nearby spinal bone structures and soft tissue, recent epidural injections, IV drug use, alcoholism, malignancy, and recent spinal trauma and surgery.
HOW DOES YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER’S NEGLIGENCE CONTRIBUTE TO SEA?
Timely SEA diagnosis is the key element to a proper and comprehensive treatment plan for the painful condition. If your healthcare provider is unable to correlate your symptoms to SEA, overlooks the onset of unmistakable signs, and veers away from performing reliable diagnostics, it can lead you towards a world of unnecessary complications. This also holds true if your provider recently gave you epidural injections that may have led to your development of SEA.
As a result, your SEA may become unmanageable to the point where any symptoms that could have been addressed earlier grow out of hand. Similarly, the longer you have to wait for the ideal treatment to be administered, the more your related symptoms and complications may grow as a result.
That is why your healthcare provider plays a critical role in helping you treat your SEA. If they do not pay attention to apparent symptoms and avoid necessary diagnostics, you may face a lifetime of challenges ahead. In addition to ongoing pain and permanent disabilities, this could also cause death.
WHAT ARE YOUR OPTIONS AFTER EXPERIENCING A SPINAL EPIDURAL ABSCESS DUE TO YOUR PROVIDER’S NEGLIGENCE?
If your healthcare provider’s negligence, mistake, or mishandling causes your SEA to go unnoticed or untreated, your diagnosis or treatment gets delayed. Whether your SEA is detected quite late or does not undergo associated treatments, you can explore your options to file a medical malpractice lawsuit if the reason traces back to your healthcare provider.
When you are already going through the turmoil of a condition as grueling as SEA, going through legal proceedings may seem like the last thing you want to put yourself and your loved ones through. At the same time, it is a necessary action that helps you seek justice while also allowing you to attain compensation that helps with your treatment and the challenges that SEA brings to your life.
HOW DOES Frischman & Rizza HELP YOU THROUGH YOUR SPINAL EPIDURAL ABSCESS MEDICAL MALPRACTICE CASE
At Frischman & Rizza, our experienced medical malpractice attorneys in Pittsburg hold a firm grasp of the complexities of such cases and the additional challenges they present to patients and their families. Due to this reason, we stay with you every step of the way to guide you through the process and steer your case in the right direction to get you the outcome you need.
Through the Frischman & Rizza family, you can let go of the burden of proving fault, arguing your case, and going through a plethora of paperwork all by yourself. Instead, our attorneys take responsibility to gather evidence, draw correlations, and prepare strong legal arguments on your behalf.
Throughout the process, we take care of the following crucial aspects.
Understanding Your Case. The process begins with our specialized attorneys comprehending the details of your case. This allows us to determine if you have a strong legal claim to file a medical malpractice lawsuit.
Gathering Evidence. Once we have gathered the facts of your case, we start collecting relevant evidence to support your claim. This ensures that you have a proper timeline to outline how your SEA was mishandled, mistreated, or overlooked by your healthcare provider.
Filing the Lawsuit. After we have the necessary information, we will file a lawsuit on your behalf. We may also request additional evidence from the healthcare provider during this phase if specific yet vital records are not available to you.
Proving Fault. Once the proceedings start, we make it a point to prove the healthcare provider at fault through the available evidence and related arguments. Our goal during this phase is to outline the provider’s negligence or mishandling regarding your case to the court of law.
Securing Compensation. Our ultimate objective is to respect your required goals with the case and achieve them through our efforts. This includes ensuring the rightful compensation for the difficulties you face with the provider’s medical malpractice.
This ensures that you do not have to feel alone or stranded while going through such a grueling time in your life. At the same time, our specialized experience, timely processes, and fierce dedication to supporting your claim increase your chances of securing your desired outcome from the case.
IT’S IMPORTANT TO LEARN KEY DETAILS REGARDING SEA
While exploring a medical malpractice case for spinal epidural abscess, you must have foundational knowledge regarding the condition, its diagnosis, and associated treatment. In addition to giving you much-needed insight, it also helps you recall if your healthcare provider’s behavior had been negligent in any of the following areas.