Failure to Diagnose Pediatric Brain Tumor
The Turner Case
During the client’s toddler years, a pediatrician failed to properly and routinely record the patient’s height, weight and head circumference at each routine office visit. Erratic head growth and failure to grow in height should have triggered investigation into brain or growth abnormalities. By age 12, the client was below 5% on the growth chart for height and weight as well (as endocrine dysfunctions).
After extensive investigation a pediatric neurologist and pediatric endocrinologist diagnosed a congenital arachnoid cyst taking up a large percentage of the brain cavity. A shunt (drain) was surgically implanted to allow the built up cerebral-spinal fluid to drain and relieve pressure on the brain and pituitary glands. The cyst was stopped before it caused irreversible brain damage or death, but long term pressure on the pituitary gland had impeded her body’s natural production of human growth hormone resulting in a final adult height of 4’6” as well as her need to take adult growth hormone for the rest of her life.
The case settled for a substantial sum. A factor aiding settlement was evidence that the pediatrician had falsified medical record entries after suit had been filed.