Medico legal Case #3 - Precautions in treating self-medicating patients
Self-medicating patients need to be managed with utmost care and caution. Doctors often face situations when the patient or in some cases even the referring doctor omits to make complete disclosures. The probability of the occurrence of this mistake increases manifold in the case of self-medicating patients, and hence more care is needed.
Facts of the Case -
An alcoholic patient prone to self medication, consults a doctor with acute pain on the right side of the ear. The patient does not follow the consulting doctor's advice to take rest and the symptoms worsen. Within a week, the patient develops high fever and goes into respiratory arrest. Cause of death recorded as terminal cardio-respiratory failure, due to acute pyogenic meningitis, with brain stem encephalitis and acute right otitis media.
Read on to know about the relatives' allegation of negligence, the doctor's defense and the court's judgement...