Doctor completing a blood pull from a patient.

Although blood transfusions help hundreds of thousands of patients yearly, they can be dangerous. Blood transfusion errors can cause severe injuries, infections, or even death. Blood transfusion mistakes can include the improper storage of blood, incorrect labeling, administering the incorrect blood type, and errors made by poorly-trained healthcare workers.

Have you or your loved one suffered an injury from a blood transfusion due to a negligent doctor, nurse, or another staff member? You may be entitled to compensation through a medical malpractice attorney. The attorneys at Dell & Dean, PLLC are prepared to advocate to protect your rights while pursuing compensation. We have a proven track record of successfully recovering the total compensation medical malpractice victims need and deserve. 

Medical Professionals Owe Patients a Duty of Care

Although blood transfusions are routine, they can cause serious injuries when medical professionals fail to meet their standards. Blood transfusions must be done in a controlled, safe manner. Doctors, nurses, and other staff members providing the blood transfusion must adhere to a specific standard of care when carrying out the blood transfusion. Should the physician make an error during the transfusion he or she could have avoided by being diligent, the injured patient has the right to pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit to pursue monetary damages. 

Common Types of Blood Transfusion Errors

Transfusing blood to another person who may be in need due to a car accident or surgery is relatively common. When the attending physician doesn’t do his or her due diligence before, during, and after the transfusion, the patient may get infected or receive an incompatible blood type. These types of errors can cause permanent health complications.

  • Lack of informed consent
  • Dispensing the wrong type of blood product, such as plasma instead of real blood
  • The patient receives expired blood products, causing injuries
  • The patient may receive the wrong blood type due to an avoidable mix-up, causing respiratory arrest, blood clots, and other complications
  • The patient receives infected blood due to the hospital not comprehensively testing the blood, exposing the patient to hepatitis, herpes, HIV, and other infections
  • Failure to follow established protocols for identifying and labeling blood and verifying the patient’s blood type
  • Inadequate and overworked staff
  • The blood of several patients is stored in the same place

Contaminated or Expired Blood

Blood may be contaminated at the time of donation with an infectious disease, such as hepatitis or HIV. Blood can also be contaminated after donation due to non-sterile equipment used during the transfusion. Affected patients can develop serious diseases and infections. Expired blood can also cause serious injuries.

The Transfusion of the Wrong Blood Type Can Cause a Patient’s Death

When a patient receives a blood transfusion, doctors must use care to ensure the blood is compatible with the patient’s blood. Providing a patient with the wrong blood product can cause serious medical complications, including Acute Hemolytic Transfusion Reaction. Patients may develop shock, circulatory distress, kidney failure, and other serious injuries that can result in death.

Medical Problems Caused By Blood Transfusion Errors

Many adverse reactions and negative side effects can occur due to blood transfusion errors. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), some of the most common problems from blood transfusions include the following.

Hypotensive Transfusion Reaction

During a hypotensive transfusion reaction, the patient’s blood pressure drops quickly during the transfusion. When doctors and nurses don’t identify and treat this reaction quickly, it can become life-threatening.

Allergic Reaction

An allergic reaction can range from nasal congestion or mild skin irritation to more severe symptoms. 

Acute Hemolytic Transfusion Reaction (AHTR) 

Acute hemolytic transfusion reaction (AHTR) occurs when patients receive blood through a blood transfusion incompatible with their blood type. When this blood transfusion error occurs, the patient’s body will react by destroying the red blood cells contained in the donated blood. AHTR can cause pain, fever, and other severe and potentially deadly complications, such as kidney failure. 

Post-Transfusion Purpura (PTP) 

Post-transfusion purpura (PTP) is a rare medical condition that causes a significant decrease in platelets. This condition can be fatal when doctors do not recognize and treat it promptly.

Transfusion-Associated Circulatory Overload (TACO)

Transfusion-associated circulatory overload (TACO) occurs when patients can’t properly process the volume of transfused blood effectively. This condition can cause respiratory distress quickly after the transfusion. It can become fatal when doctors don’t identify and treat this condition quickly.

Transfusion-Associated dyspnea (TAD)

Transfusion-associated dyspnea (TAD) occurs when the T-lymphocytes in the transfused blood begin to attack the patient’s blood. TAD can result in life-threatening complications.

Transfusion-Transmitted infection (TTI) 

Transfusion-transmitted infection occurs when a virus, bacteria, or another pathogen is in the transfused blood and transfers into the patient’s blood. TTI can cause serious, life-threatening conditions

Dell & Dean, PLLC. medical malpractice attorneys in New York & Long Island offering free consultations.

Compensation Available Through a Blood Transfusion Error Lawsuit

When doctors fail to use reasonable care when conducting blood transfusions, patients can suffer debilitating injuries or death. Pursuing a medical malpractice lawsuit allows victims to hold the hospital, doctors, nurses, or other negligent healthcare providers accountable for a blood transfusion error. As the victim of a blood transfusion error, you may be entitled to substantial compensation for the following damages:

  • Current and future medical expenses related to the error
  • Lost income
  • Diminished earning capacity
  • Pain and suffering 
  • Inconvenience
  • Diminished capacity for enjoying life
  • Other damages 

Contact a Medical Malpractice Attorney in Long Island, New York

At Dell & Dean, PLLC, our Long Island medical malpractice attorneys have the skill and experience necessary to handle even the most complex medical malpractice cases. If you’ve suffered an injury due to a blood transfusion error, we are prepared to hold the negligent party or parties accountable. 

Our legal team has a proven track record of successfully holding negligent medical professionals accountable and recovering the full compensation victims need and deserve. You only have limited time to file a medical malpractice lawsuit. Contact Dell & Dean, PLLC to Schedule an initial consultation and learn more about how we can advocate for you.

Dell & Dean, PLLC handles claims throughout Nassau County and Suffolk County on Long Island as well as the boroughs of New York City, and the surrounding areas.