Couple sues CAMC for failing to make proper diagnosis

CHARLESTON – A Charleston couple is suing Charleston Area Medical Center for failing to make a proper diagnosis. Dr. Lisa Downham is also named as a defendant in the suit. Charleston Area Medical Center is doing business as Health Plus Urgent Care. On March 23, Kimmy McNair presented to Health Plus with complaints of a dry cough, chest congestion, a sore throat, body aches and nasal drainage and was seen by Downham, according to a complaint filed Dec. 5 in Kanawha Circuit Court. McNair claims a chest x-ray was performed which showed no radiographic evidence of acute cardiopulmonary process. Downham diagnosed McNair with right lower lobe pneumonia and bronchitis even though the chest x-ray was negative, prescribed her Levaquin and sent her home, according to the suit. McNair claims approximately one week later she collapsed at work and was taken to Charleston Area Medical Center, where she was diagnosed with ARDS, admitted, listed as critical care and had to be intubated. Since the initial diagnosis of ARDS, McNair has had severe and persistent pulmonary impairment, which is believed to be permanent, according to the suit. McNair claims the defendants acted negligently, carelessly, willfully and wantonly and/or with a reckless disregard of risk of harm, which caused her injuries. The defendants were negligent in failing to properly diagnose and treat McNair’s complaints of cough and chest congestion, specifically in improperly diagnosing McNair was pneumonia and improperly prescribing Levaquin, according to the suit. McNair claims she has suffered physical pain and mental anguish; sustained disfigurement and deformities; incurred medical expenses; suffered lost wages and earning capacity; has sustained humiliation and embarrassment; and has suffered an impairment of her capacity to enjoy life. As a result of the defendants’ negligence, McNair’s husband, Larry McNair, has sustained great and irreparable loss in that he has suffered a loss of comfort, society, convenience and consortium to and from his wife, according to the suit. The McNairs are seeking compensatory and punitive damages with pre- and post-judgment interest. They are being represented by Richard D. Lindsay and Matthew C. Lindsay. The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge Paul Zakaib Jr. Kanawha Circuit Court case number: 12-C-2390

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