Detroit Kidney Injury Attorneys

Kidney Injuries Due to Medical Malpractice at Michigan Hospitals

Our kidneys do a lot to keep our bodies healthy. When an injury prevents a patient’s kidneys from working properly, the results can be devastating.

Medical providers have a responsibility to provide care that meets certain standards. When a doctor, hospital staff member, or other provider fails to meet the established standard of care, a patient can suffer serious harm. A person harmed by this type of medical negligence or their surviving family members may have a claim for medical malpractice.

If you have suffered a kidney injury and suspect you were injured by medical malpractice, don’t delay. Contact the experienced Southfield medical malpractice lawyers at Sommers Schwartz today. The initial consultation is free and confidential.

Why Your Kidney Health Matters

Most people have two kidneys. Together, two healthy kidneys filter about a half-cup of blood every minute. Each kidney removes waste products and sends them to the bladder for excretion.

The kidneys also remove extra water so your body can maintain the correct balance of water, vitamins, and minerals. When this balance is disrupted, your entire body feels the impact. Your brain, heart, muscles, and nerves may not work correctly. This can lead to discomfort, pain, or even death.

The kidneys are also important in creating and synthesizing various hormones that enable other body functions. They help make the hormones that adjust blood pressure, create new red blood cells, and manage vitamin D levels for healthy bones.

Kidney injuries can cause the kidneys to work less effectively or shut down completely. When a patient’s kidneys don’t work correctly, they may have to undergo dialysis. Dialysis is a treatment that uses a machine to clean your blood, helping your body to remove waste and extra fluids. Dialysis can only do 10-15% of the work of a normal kidney; it also takes time, costs money, and can be uncomfortable for patients. Kidney transplants are not an option for all patients or in all situations, even if a matching donor kidney is available.

How Kidney Injuries May Result From Negligence

Kidney disease can be caused or worsened by several factors, including direct injuries and mismanagement of several contributing health conditions. When medical malpractice causes kidney problems, it’s vital to understand your legal rights and options.

Mismanaged High Blood Pressure or Diabetes

High blood pressure and diabetes are the two most common causes of kidney disease. Both are common medical conditions, especially among older adults. When these conditions are appropriately managed, a person may live many years with healthy kidneys. If either condition is overlooked, ignored, or mismanaged, serious harm to the kidneys can occur.

Medication Errors

The kidneys filter waste products out of the blood, including byproducts of medications. When a person receives an incorrect or overly high dose of medication, the kidneys must work harder to clean the waste effectively. Sometimes, the kidneys simply cannot handle the amount of waste in the bloodstream; overtaxing these organs can cause irreversible damage or failure.

Failure to Diagnose a Kidney-Related Condition

Many people have kidney disease for months or even years without showing symptoms. When symptoms appear, they can be hard to detect. Doctors have a responsibility to understand how kidney disease is related to other common medical conditions, especially those that increase a patient’s risk, and to order the proper tests in a timely manner.

The earlier a doctor and patient recognize kidney disease, the more time they have to make changes to support the kidneys and improve the patient’s health. If kidney disease goes unchecked, it can cause severe and permanent damage to one or both organs.

Contrast Dyes Used in Radiology Procedures

Some imaging scans use a contrast fluid to help certain body parts, like organs and blood vessels, appear more clearly. These dyes can help medical professionals examine internal body structures using an MRI, a CT scan, or an X-ray.

However, contrast dye can also trigger kidney failure in some cases. This condition is known as contrast-induced nephropathy. Some patients have risk factors that make contrast-induced nephropathy more likely; healthcare providers must be aware of and consider those factors.

What To Do if You Suspect Medical Malpractice

Kidney injuries from medical malpractice may affect one or both kidneys. Warning signs that the kidneys are struggling to do their job include:

  • High blood pressure.
  • Feeling the need to urinate frequently, especially when trying to sleep.
  • Having trouble urinating or pain when urinating.
  • Swelling or puffiness around the eyes and in the hands and feet.

Some test results can also indicate injury to the kidneys or the presence of kidney disease. These include:

  • Evidence of blood or protein in urine samples.
  • Abnormally high creatinine and blood urea nitrogen (BUN) levels on blood tests.
  • Abnormally low results on a glomerular filtration rate (GFR) test.

If you believe a medical provider’s negligence caused your kidney injury or illness, talk to an experienced medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible.

When you speak to a caring, committed legal team like Sommers Schwartz, you can learn more about how the law applies to your situation. Our experienced attorneys will help you understand your options so you can make better decisions for yourself and your family and make a plan to move forward. We provide the support you need so you can focus on healing.

Your first consultation with our office is always free and confidential. Contact us today to get started.

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