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Man on Tysabri sues hospital for malpractice

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    Man on Tysabri sues hospital for malpractice

    Thoughts on this? Someone is suing a hospital because he was on Tysabri and showing weakness on one side and yet nobody took him off Tysabri even though he might have been developing PML, he claims. The source is just a student newspaper but just might be accurate--I don't know, but it's been around since 1904 and has won some awards.
    Last edited by agate; 05-12-2021, 08:16 AM.
    SPMS diagnosed 1980. Avonex 2001-2004. Copaxone 2006-2009. Glatiramer acetate since December 2020.

    #2
    Interesting lawsuit. Did he or did he not develop PML?
    I am surprised Neuro’s continue to prescribe Tysabri.
    Interesting that he worked high up in the DT administration also—hmmmm.

    Comment


      #3
      I've been trying to find out if he actually did develop PML but have a notion he didn't. That notion is based on no evidence whatsoever though--except that if he had developed PML, it probably would have been mentioned in the article--or no?

      It does seem really odd that they went ahead with his Tysabri infusion.
      SPMS diagnosed 1980. Avonex 2001-2004. Copaxone 2006-2009. Glatiramer acetate since December 2020.

      Comment


        #4
        ((((((Hugs to All)))))) ~

        Having read this article several times, I would guess that CZ has developed a case to present, which is 21 pages long. What those 21 pages contain is what matters as to whether he has a valid, winnable case.

        Malpractice cases are among the most difficult to win for assorted reasons. One might think that juries would favor the victim, but that isn't always true. Doctors are revered by some people. And, evidence of malpractice, depending upon its accepted definition, is often difficult to substantiate.

        Has CZ had any tests to verify that he has PML? Or that he was going down the road to having PML?

        Has CZ recovered from the weakness he experienced after his infusion?

        Is he still in a wheelchair? How can he demonstrate that the drug was the reason for his decline and not a progression of MS?

        It is a sticky wicket.

        To me, $1 million isn't that gigantic a claim for what he says he has endured. If the rest of his life has been altered severely by Tysabri, then he might have reason to ask for more money.

        I guess will see how this plays out in court.

        Love & Light,

        ❤️❤️❤️❤️

        Rose

        *Virtual Hugs Are Germ-Free!


        THANKS!
        Mom to Jon, 49, & Michael, 32, born with an undiagnosed progressive neuromuscular disease. Angel Michael received his wings in 2003. Angel Jon received his wings in 2019. In 2020, Jim, their Dad, joined them.

        Comment


          #5
          Rose, this is so often the question:

          How can he demonstrate that the drug was the reason for his decline and not a progression of MS?
          I'm sure we'll never know the details of the lawsuit or probably how it is settled. I've tried to find the answers to your questions but all I could find out was that he has a Twitter page, and the activities he's tweeting about doing sound like the kind of thing a moderately disabled person using a wheelchair could be doing though he doesn't mention whether he's using any mobility aids.

          I believe that most MS patients taking Tysabri are tested for the John Cunningham virus periodically because testing positive for the JC virus means that the person is vulnerable to PML while on Tysabri. We don't know whether CZ had been tested for that either. There is so much that isn't known here but I found it an interesting story.
          SPMS diagnosed 1980. Avonex 2001-2004. Copaxone 2006-2009. Glatiramer acetate since December 2020.

          Comment


          • Lazarus
            Lazarus commented
            Editing a comment
            Interesting article and situation. I do know that I tested positive for the JC virus but continued on to take infusions because the number on the scale JC+ that I had was a 2 and not a 10. This story is incomplete and sounds that way but, it is all tooo true that some of us have had trouble getting neurologists and all doctors for that matter...we have had trouble getting them to pay attention.

          #6
          Based on what little information is given, it sounds to me as if he has a case.

          Czwartacki first began feeling symptoms of weakness on February 26, 2018, but was unable to see Richardson before his previously scheduled appointment on March 2, according to the lawsuit. The complaint states that when Czwartacki was infused with the drug during his appointment, he was no longer able to walk.
          This sounds like not just a bit of left-side weakness--since he wasn't able to walk at the time he was infused and he had told them (though it should have been a red flag to them if someone who had been able to walk now isn't):

          ...alleged in a 21-page complaint filed April 28 that doctors at the GW Hospital improperly continued Czwartacki on the M.S. drug Tysabri after he warned them he was feeling weakness on his left side.
          Neurology is a really subtle thing and it's very easy to miss important signs--or to misinterpret them, apparently. But someone who has been walking and then isn't and calls attention to it--I should think the neuro would have seen a red flag. Particularly since PML is so much like MS that sometimes the experts don't know if a person has PML or worsening MS when new symptoms and signs come along.

          SPMS diagnosed 1980. Avonex 2001-2004. Copaxone 2006-2009. Glatiramer acetate since December 2020.

          Comment


            #7
            ((((((Hugs to All)))))) ~

            Agate ~

            CZ may have a good case, but many a good case for malpractice has been lost by the suing patient.

            I've consulted a few attorneys throughout the years for what I believed was malpractice against Jonathan or Michael. I was told that I might have a good case, but it would be difficult to prove.

            What we don't know:

            Does CZ have documentation that he spoke to his physician about the weakness and that it correlated to his Tysabri infusion? Did he write his doctor a letter, email, or Twitter post? Did he tape his conversation with his doctor?

            Without solid documentation, it's hearsay.

            For example, Jim's first oncologist gave him Opdivo without considering how it would affect his RA. He had a horrific flare immediately after his first infusion. I called and left a message for his oncologist. She didn't return the call. When Jim was able to talk to her 10 days after ignoring Jim's excruciating pain, she told Jim that he never told her that he had RA.

            Of course he did. He told every medical professional he saw. She didn't do blood work on Jim to find out whether he had RA, as she should have before giving him Opdivo, but it was in his chart from Jim's PCP. When Jim told her that, she pulled out his chart, found the test, and mumbled, "Oh here it is."

            We didn't record any of these conversations, so it would have been her word against his word if we pursued it legally. Believe me, we thought about it more than once, because she was negligent in many other ways.

            I have met with doctors in all specialities you can imagine. By far, neurologists are the worst communicators, listeners, and the least willing to blame a drug they have prescribed as the cause for an adverse reaction or symptom. A neurologist's ego enters the room 10 minutes before his/her body does.

            I could write a very long book on just that subject alone.

            Working Title: "Neurologists I Have Known: How Dare I Claim To Know What Is Best for My Children!"

            During a visit with a new neuro for Jonathan, Jon had a seizure. I told the neuro, "Jon's seizing now!" Ran over to Jon, and the neuro didn't look up from his notepad. He was writing a prescription. As we walked back to our van in the parking lot, we passed his brand new Porsche.

            Back to CZ ~ Why did he agree to continue taking Tysabri, after he experienced weakness? Did he Google Tysabri or PML after his first infusion? Even if a doctor told me that it was okay for me to continue on the drug, I would refuse. I would challenge the doctor with my research and demand an explanation.

            We have to stay on top of everything, because sometimes our physicians don't tell us the whole story. Or they don't pay attention.

            Good luck to CZ. I'm sorry that he's suffering.

            Love & Light,

            ❤️❤️❤️❤️

            Rose

            *Virtual Hugs Are Germ-Free!


            THANKS!






            Mom to Jon, 49, & Michael, 32, born with an undiagnosed progressive neuromuscular disease. Angel Michael received his wings in 2003. Angel Jon received his wings in 2019. In 2020, Jim, their Dad, joined them.

            Comment


              #8
              It doesn't sound as though he developed PML to me, so if he did not develop it I doubt he has a valid claim.
              Virginia

              Comment


                #9
                Originally posted by Virginia View Post
                It doesn't sound as though he developed PML to me, so if he did not develop it I doubt he has a valid claim.
                That's probably the way it is. The hospital might argue that he himself should have said No to the Tysabri infusion at that point if he had doubts--that it was entirely up to him. It might even claim to have no record of his left-side weakness. It might have "lost" any record there was. Or phrased the record in such a way as to make it seem unimportant. I'm almost sure that hospitals and doctors' offices can and do tinker with records in ways that protect themselves.

                Rose's story about Jim's RA might be a case in point. They eventually did find the record but they seem to have tried to "lose" it.

                A neurologist's ego enters the room 10 minutes before his/her body does.
                That has been my experience too, Rose, with a couple of possible exceptions.

                SPMS diagnosed 1980. Avonex 2001-2004. Copaxone 2006-2009. Glatiramer acetate since December 2020.

                Comment


                  #10
                  ((((((Hugs to All)))))) ~

                  Virginia, we don't have enough information from the article to clarify whether he has PML. He might be suing for the weakness and threat of PML in taking Tysabri.

                  Agate ~ Jim's first oncologist was incompetent and negligent in many ways. She knew that she had messed up, when Jim confronted her about his previous blood work indicating that he had RA. She didn't lose his file. She either didn't read it or didn't retain what she had read.

                  Nonetheless, Opdivo, as is the case with most immunotherapy, can result in a flare of an autoimmune disorder. So, every cancer patient offered immunotherapy should be tested for autoimmune disorders/diseases.

                  She didn't do that. She was at fault. But proving that in court, against a cadre of doctors testifying on her behalf, would have been awful.

                  George Washington University has the money to protect the physicians and the hospital, with lawyers skilled in battling malpractice suits.

                  I would be surprised if CZ wins his lawsuit.

                  Unfortunately, I have no exceptions to egotistical neurologists, but I'm grateful that you have had some. I understand, because if I got the slightest indication that the neurologist was listening and comprehending my sons' issues, I would give that doctor a better rating than the rest. It is a low bar.

                  Love & Light,

                  ❤️❤️❤️❤️

                  Rose

                  *Virtual Hugs Are Germ-Free!


                  THANKS!
                  Mom to Jon, 49, & Michael, 32, born with an undiagnosed progressive neuromuscular disease. Angel Michael received his wings in 2003. Angel Jon received his wings in 2019. In 2020, Jim, their Dad, joined them.

                  Comment


                    #11
                    Unfortunately, I have no exceptions to egotistical neurologists, but I'm grateful that you have had some.
                    It might be just wishful thinking on my part.
                    SPMS diagnosed 1980. Avonex 2001-2004. Copaxone 2006-2009. Glatiramer acetate since December 2020.

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