Archive for November, 2014

Mississippi Trucking Accident Attorneys Talk About Methamphetamine

Wednesday, November 26th, 2014

The drivers of tractor trailers have a job that is more physical and mentally demanding than those of us who don’t drive trucks for a living are aware of. The physical demands of spending long hours on the road, along with the feelings that accompany being away from their homes and families for weeks at a time can be exhausting. Many truck drivers enjoy their work, but that does not mean that they do not experience feelings of fatigue or exhaustion from time to time. Unfortunately, mixing exhaustion with the task of driving a vehicle that is larger and heavier than the other vehicles on the road can prove dangerous and even deadly.

Many tractor trailer accidents are caused by driver fatigue. Since the potential for fatigue exists whenever a truck driver is working, each truck driver must determine their own plan for preventing fatigue and for addressing it when it does happen. There are rules in place that govern the hours that truck drivers can work, and these “hours of service” regulations can be a good place to start for preventing fatigue. Some drivers find that taking naps during periods of time that they stop for a break helps them to maintain alertness when on the road. Other drivers find that brisk walks or exercise breaks are good for both their physical fitness and for their ability to fight fatigue. Many truck drivers also enjoy plenty of coffee, which can boost alertness.

The fatigue prevention strategies mentioned above are all safe, legal ways for truck drivers to maintain alertness throughout the workday. Unfortunately, some truck drivers use illegal stimulants like methamphetamine (meth) to stay awake. Meth can be found at many truck stops, so drivers do not have to go out of their way to get it. Drivers who use meth to stay awake put their safety and the safety of others at risk, because meth can affect drivers’ depth perception and reaction time in addition to causing hallucinations and vertigo. Many serious and fatal tractor trailer accidents have been caused by drivers who were high on meth. Meth addicts are also at risk for heart attacks and strokes. If a truck driver has a heart attack or a stroke while they are driving, a serious accident is likely to occur.

Drug use among truck drivers is a serious problem, but truck drivers are not monitored as closely for drug use as many people might think. Many employers do use pre-employment drug testing, but once a driver is employed by a company they may be tested randomly. Infrequent and random drug tests can result in meth users avoiding detection for extended periods of time. Company policies vary greatly as to what disciplinary measures are used against drivers who are caught using drugs.

Giddens Law Firm, P.A.: Mississippi Trucking Accident Attorneys

 If you have been injured in a trucking accident that involved a trucker who was impaired due to methamphetamine, the Mississippi Trucking Accident Attorneys at the Giddens Law Firm, P.A. can help you to pursue the recovery that you deserve. Please call our office today, at (601) 355-2022 to set up a consultation with us.

Mississippi Birth Injury Attorneys Discuss Injuries Caused by Prescription Drugs

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

Many of us rely on medications to treat medical conditions, and some medications have the power to do a lot of good things for our health. When a woman is trying to conceive or she becomes pregnant, though, it is possible that she may have to stop taking some of the medications that she had previously been using safely. The reason for this is that not all medications are safe for use during pregnancy. Using medications that are not approved for use during pregnancy can cause birth defects and birth injuries.

Prescription drugs are powerful substances which can have impacts on our bodies that go beyond relieving the symptoms for which they were prescribed. The devastating impacts of some medications on babies who were exposed to them in utero have been known for quite some time. In the early 1960’s, thousands of babies died or were disfigured after their mothers were prescribed Thalidomide for morning sickness. There are many prescription drugs on the market today, and some of them do pose serious risks to the development of babies in utero when they are used by mothers who are pregnant.

Every year in America, fifteen thousand birth defects are caused by prescription drugs. Approximately seventy percent of women take at least one prescription medication during their pregnancy. Some of these women are taking medications that have been shown to be safe for use during pregnancy, while others are taking medications whose effects on developing fetuses are unknown or which are not approved for use during pregnancy.

The types of prescription drugs which have caused birth defects include fertility treatments, a prescription acne treatment, antifungal medications, popular antidepressants, some painkillers and anti-convulsants.  When a child is born with a birth defect or injury, it is important to consider any possible causes of harm. If the child’s mother was prescribed one of the prescription medications listed above, it is possible that the parents may be able to recover damages from the doctor who prescribed the medication. When a doctor is prescribing a medication to treat an expectant mother’s medical condition, they are supposed to look at the FDA’s categorized lists of medications and select the safest option. The doctor should also consider whether the medication is absolutely necessary. In addition to filing a claim against the doctor who prescribed the medication, parents may be able to file a claim against the manufacturer of the drug.

Giddens Law Firm, P.A.: Mississippi Medical Malpractice Attorneys

If you were prescribed prescription drugs during your pregnancy and your baby was born with a birth defect, you could benefit from the assistance of qualified Mississippi Birth Injury Attorneys. The attorneys at the Giddens Law Firm, P.A. would like to hear from you. Please call our office today, at (601) 355-2022 to arrange a consultation with us.

 

Mississippi Medical Malpractice Attorneys Discuss the Frequency of Malpractice

Sunday, November 2nd, 2014

Many of us have heard disturbing tales of wrong site surgeries, medication errors, misdiagnoses, and the like. These stories are concerning on their own, but perhaps even more concerning are the statistics which show just how often incidents of medical malpractice occur. Medical malpractice cases involve many different scenarios, from foreign objects left inside of the body after surgery, wrong body part surgeries, incorrect surgeries, medication errors, misdiagnoses and failures to diagnose. Medical malpractice occurs whenever a health care provider’s actions deviate from the established standard of care and cause harm to a patient. Two years ago, researchers at Johns Hopkins University published a study that examined how frequently incidents of medical malpractice, which are often called “never events”, actually happen.

A “never event” is something that medical professionals agree should never happen during surgery. All “never events” are deviations from the standards of care which medical professionals are supposed to adhere to in providing care to their patients. Things like surgical sponges being left inside of patients, incorrect body part surgery, and incorrect surgery on the right body part are all “never events”. Approximately 4,044 never events occur annually in the United States. As part of the study, the “never events” were categorized, and the researchers found that each week, twenty incorrect surgeries were performed.  Also, twenty patients per week reported surgery on the wrong body part and another thirty nine patients per week reported that a surgical implement was left inside of their body.

The researchers who did the Johns Hopkins study think that their estimate of the number of “never events” is much lower than the actual occurrence of such events because the estimates were based upon medical malpractice cases that were actually filed, and which were voluntarily reported by hospitals. As few as fifteen percent of medical malpractice claims are voluntarily reported by hospitals, so the numbers that are reported in the study may just be the tip of the iceberg. Additionally, some “never events” cause very little damage to the patient before they are discovered and therefore, they do not result in medical malpractice claims. Another reason that the “never events” estimates in the Johns Hopkins study may be rather low is that some “never events” are never even discovered.

Giddens Law Firm, P.A.: Mississippi Medical Malpractice Attorneys

Medical malpractice can have a long lasting impact on both the victims and their families. If you have been injured or someone that you love has been killed as the result of the negligent actions of a health care provider, you may be able to file a medical malpractice claim.  At the Giddens Law Firm, P.A., our team of Mississippi Medical Malpractice Attorneys can help you to pursue a claim for damages that will adequately compensate you and your family for the pain, suffering, and other adverse effects that they have experienced. To learn more about how we can help you to recover from medical malpractice, please call the attorneys at the Giddens Law Firm, P.A., at (601) 355-2022.

Mississippi Automobile Accident Attorneys Talk About Brain Injuries

Saturday, November 1st, 2014

Brain injuries are one of the most common types of injuries that affect victims of automobile accidents. There are varying types of brain injuries, each of which has its own set of challenges and complications. When someone has a brain injury, they may be rendered fully or partially incapable of meeting their day-to-day needs and the needs of their family. This presents a major challenge to the injured person’s family and friends, who must find ways to meet those needs both immediately and also into the future if recovery is slow or incomplete.

Some brain injury victims are expected to recover fully, while others may only be expected to make a partial recovery. It may be difficult for doctors to predict how long recovery may take and what degree of recovery is expected to occur in any given brain injury case. The recovery process for brain injury victims is slow, and extended periods of time may pass without any measurable progress. Things that were second nature prior to the injury, like speaking, eating, and walking, may need to be re-learned over a period of time, as the brain recovers.

When an automobile accident victim sustains a brain injury, their doctors may not be able to determine the full extent of the damage that has occurred. Doctors may also have a hard time coming up with a timeline for expected recovery. Both of these things make it difficult for the victim’s family to file a claim for damages on their behalf because they make the exact amount of damages difficult to ascertain. Automobile accident cases involving brain injuries often take longer than other automobile accident cases, which can be frustrating for the victims’ family and friends, who would like their claims for damages resolved in a timely manner so that they can ensure that the victims’ financial needs are met.

Automobile accident victims should know that brain injuries are not always detectable in the hours and days following a crash. It is important that all accident victims get checked out by a doctor as soon as possible, in order to check for signs of brain injuries or other types of injuries. Early detection and treatment can give accident victims the best possible chance at recovery. Even if your initial doctor’s visit does not result in a diagnosis, you have at least provided your doctor with a frame of reference that they can look back on if you experience new symptoms or changes in your health as time passes after your accident.

Giddens Law Firm, P.A.: Mississippi Automobile Accident Attorneys

Living with a brain injury can be very challenging for automobile accident victims and their families. Brain injury cases can be complicated, but knowledgeable Mississippi Automobile Accident Attorneys can help you to pursue the recovery that you deserve. To learn more about how the attorneys at the Giddens Law Firm, P.A. can help you, call us today at (601) 355-2022, to arrange a completely confidential initial consultation.