56 year old man presents to ER with complaints of epigastric pain. AN EKG is ordered and interpreted as normal as is an abdominal sonogram. No further cardiac work-up is done. Patient remains in ER for over 12 hours with unremitting epigastric complaints. Presumptive diagnosis of pancreatitis is made, but no definitive diagnosis is ever made. Eventually he is sent for a CT scan. While undergoing scan he suffers cardiac arrest, resuscitative efforts fail and dies. Cause of death is cardiac arrhythmia.
MEDQUEST EXPERT RESPONSES:
Probably MERITORIOUS ….. Records need to be reviewed for actions of caregivers both diagnostically and therapeutically. The patient required cardiac evaluation .Dr IM – ER
Repeat EKG’s and cardiac enzymes should have been undertaken. If the autopsy showed significant occlusive ischemic coronary disease, then this would strengthen the case against the ER doctor. Dr KJ – ER