Martinez, Hart, Thompson & Sanchez, P.C.
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Albuquerque, New Mexico, Personal Injury Blog

Surgical errors may be more common than we think

Going in for surgery can be terrifying. We've all heard horror stories on the news and portrayed in the movies, which can leave us afraid that we'll come out of an operation worse off than when we went in. Although some experts report that these fears are unfounded, claiming that surgical errors are extremely uncommon, the statistical occurrence of these "never events" may be much higher than previously thought. Additionally, those who are injured or killed by one of these event care very little about how common or rare they are.

Despite the fact that one study found that surgical errors may only occur in one out of every 112,000 operations, this statistic only includes those procedures that occur in an operating room. When consideration is given to procedures conducted in a different setting, then the rate may be much higher. In fact, one recent study found that approximately half of surgical errors occur in a setting other than the operating room, such as during ambulatory surgery or some types of radiology.

The effects of traumatic brain injury

Being suddenly and unexpectedly injured can turn an individual's life upside-down. For some individuals, such an injury is relatively minor, say cuts and bruises, thereby only affecting them for a few days. Others who suffer broken bones and whiplash may have a more extensive recovery that could last weeks or months. Yet other individuals are dealt serious injuries that reshape the rest of their lives.

Perhaps the most damaging of those harms is traumatic brain injury. Depending on the area of the brain damaged and the severity of the injury, a victim can be affected in different ways. Those who suffer mild traumatic brain injury may suffer some physical symptoms, such as headache, dizziness, nausea, and confusion, but they can also suffer sensory and cognitive damage. A mild traumatic brain injury can cause a sensitivity to light and sound, and it may leave a victim with problems related to his or her mood, memory, and ability to control depression and anxiety.

Car accident leaves victim with severed foot

At some point in their lives, nearly everyone will suffer some sort of serious injury. Yet, even these serious injuries can be on a sliding scale of severity. Some individuals may suffer gashes that require stitches, while others may wind up with a brain injury after a significant car accident. Regardless of the type of injury suffered, though, all victims of serious injuries have something in common: their lives will be affected. They may need extensive medical care and rehabilitation, they may be forced to miss work, and, in some cases, a victim is left with a permanent disability.

One Albuquerque woman may be in this situation now after a pedestrian accident. According to reports, the woman and her boyfriend were standing outside of an apartment building when a car suddenly struck them. As a result, the woman's foot was severed from her leg. A witness to the accident collected the foot and placed it in a freezer in hopes that medical professionals would be able to reattach it. The woman was rushed to the hospital, along with her foot, for immediate surgery. It is unclear at this time whether the operation was successful.

5 key reasons that car accidents keep happening

An incredible amount of time, energy and money gets put into stopping car accidents. New technology is invented for the sole purpose of lowering collision rates. Driver education programs focus heavily on accident prevention and avoidance.

But the accidents don't stop. They take thousands of lives every year and lead to tens of thousands of injuries.

Talk about trampoline safety and take precautions with your kids

Trampolines are intriguing for children. It seems like they have become more and more popular. Trampoline parks and businesses have popped up more and more over the last few years. Your child asked for a backyard trampoline. You can see the appeal. As a parent, you also question safety. You want your child to have fun, but you also don’t want them to get hurt.

It is estimated that in 2006 nearly 109,000 children were injured on trampolines. That number is shockingly high. You want to get your child a trampoline for the backyard, but you also want to make sure it is as safe as possible.

What is an attractive nuisance?

Children are among the most vulnerable in our society. For this reason, the law has put certain protections in place to help ensure their safety. One of these laws is the law of attractive nuisance. Under this law, a property owner can be held liable for injuries to a child when something on his or her property not only draws a child onto the premises, but also puts him or her in danger. Children are often unable to properly assess the risk they face, so this law imposes a special duty on property owners to either avoid these attractions, or take additional steps to ensure that children cannot easily access them.

So what would qualify as an attractive nuisance? Generally speaking, it is anything that can draw a child onto one's property. In practice, though, courts have interpreted the law pretty narrowly. For example, sometimes courts only consider man-made objects to be attractive nuisances. In this situation, a swimming pool may be considered an attractive nuisance, whereas a pond would not. Although the law recognizes that children are unable to accurately gauge danger, it also recognizes that children can perceive obvious dangers, such as falls from great heights.

Ensuring your child’s safety in daycare

Your child stays at a daycare facility while you work. While they are there, you have to trust that the facility cares for your child and protects their safety. But how can you be sure that your child is receiving proper care?

Child Care Aware reported that 2.8 million children in the United States spend approximately 35 hours a week in organized daycare. A majority of these children receive proper care, but we should not accept the fact that any of these children could suffer neglect or abuse at the hands of their caregivers. Learn the signs of child neglect and abuse to make sure that your child is not being taken advantage of.

Aggressively advocating for car accident victims

Most New Mexico residents will find themselves at the center of a car accident at some point in their lives. While most of these wrecks are minor fender-benders where minimal property damage is the only thing to be concerned about, some of these car accidents are quite serious, leaving victims with extensive physical pain and suffering, emotional turmoil, and financial losses that can threaten their future. Nobody deserves to be in this position, especially those who were injured by the negligence of another. When this is the case, it might be wise to take legal action against the driver who caused the accident, as a successful personal injury claim could result in accountability and the recovery of compensation.

Of course, the legal arena is adversarial by nature. If you decide to file a lawsuit, you shouldn't expect your opponent to simply give in to your every demand. Instead, you'll need to be prepared to beat back aggressive defense tactics and make strong legal arguments that support your position. This means knowing the law, how to effectively litigate, and how to persuade judge and jury not only that liability should be imposed, but also that the full extent of your damages should be awarded.

Modification of a wrongful death award

The sudden and unexpected loss of a loved one is never easy to take. Surviving family members can be left grief-stricken, not knowing how to carry on with their own lives. The heartache can be exacerbated when the death was caused by the negligence of another. Knowing that the fatal accident that stripped their loved one away from them can leave a family thirsty for some sense of justice. Oftentimes this comes in the form of a wrongful death lawsuit, which, when successful, can bring accountability, closure, and compensation.

Although imposing liability on a negligent individual can be challenging, so, too, can proving the full extent of one's damages. After all, wrongful death compensation is often both forward and backward-looking. One way that it is forward looking is that a jury must decide how much lost wages an individual would otherwise have earned. Many factors can go into this determination, including an individual's education and his or her wage at the time of death.

Albuquerque officer being sued following on-the-job collisions

Just because a person in Albuquerque is a police officer does not mean they are above the law. Just like any other motorist, police officers are tasked with driving with due care for the safety of others. Those who fail to do this and negligently cause an accident may face a lawsuit brought by the injured victims.

This is what is happening to one Albuquerque police officer who was involved in five crashes over the past three years while on the job. He is being sued with regard to two of those accidents. However, according to police, the crashes were not preventable, and police officers must, per their job duties, spend a lot of time in their patrol vehicles.

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