Why ‘Prompt’ Recompression?
Here are $32 Million reason which has been in the public domain since 1996.
“If the arteries supplying blood to the spinal cord becomes blocked, an area of the spinal cord is deprived of oxygen due to decreased blood flow. Without oxygen to the spinal cord, nerve cells idle; when they receive oxygen the neurons can fire up again.
If the nerve cells are without oxygen for 10-15 minutes, they may fire back up, but ultimately trigger their own suicide routines, a process known as preprogrammed cell death or apoptosis. Symptoms may come and go, but the process is irreversible.” …. Dr. Arthur Dick.
‘Evidence presented at trial established that full recovery was a virtual certainty with timely
treatment in a hyperbaric chamber within two hours of the onset of symptoms. The chances for full
recovery would decline over time, however, so that after four hours an untreated bends patient would
more likely than not sustain permanent injuries.
Rawson was on shore within 90 minutes, at which time he was met by ambulance and evaluated by emergency medical technicians. The patient was ready for transport within another 10 minutes but, rather than take him to an available hyperbaric chamber at the Navy Air Station less than 1-1.2 miles away, Baptist personnel ordered the ambulance to wait for a Life Flight helicopter transport.
In addition to the delays occasioned by the decision to use Life Flight, Baptist then decided to transport Rawson to its emergency room where there was no chamber.
Finally, Baptist’s decision to transport Rawson to Panama City, Florida for hyperbaric treatment
resulted in Rawson not entering a chamber within the critical four hour period. Rawson was left with
paraplegia and brought suit against Baptist’…. Successfully……
“No one, not a president or a doctor, is above the law. Mr. Levin went on to tell the jury that his whole case was made possible by the fortuitous discovery of a Navy document which proved that Baptist knew the Navy chamber was available for Rawson: Something happened that said, the good guys are going to win this time.”
CITE: 674 So.2d 777 BAPTIST HOSPITAL, INC., Appellant, v. Malcolm Keith RAWSON, Appellee.
DOCKET, COURT: No. 95-2237. District Court of Appeal of Florida, First District.
DATE, SOURCE: April 24, 1996, Filed. Rehearing Denied June 19, 1996. Released for Publication June19, 1996.