Clarence Clemons was the saxophonist for E Street Band for nearly 30 years. However, in 2011, he died of a stroke. Nearly two years on, his death became a medical negligence case that made worldwide headlines, unlike the many cases that are presented before Sydney courts each year. But why did the family think a medical negligence lawsuit was in order?
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Before Clarence ‘The Big Man’ Clemons died he was being treated for a number of different medical problems. However, the real concern in this medical negligence case is the treatment of his carpal tunnel syndrome. Playing saxophone was what made Clemons who he was and had seen him tour the world with Bruce Springsteen, but carpal tunnel syndrome could very well have been the undoing of all that.
In the months leading up to Clemons stroke and death he had an operation to treat his carpal tunnel syndrome after he suddenly lost feeling in his index finger and thumb. Prior to that operation, Clemons had been taking blood-thinning medication, a common treatment for unhelpful blood clots that could’ve developed as a result of previous surgeries for things like joint replacements and spinal fusion that Clemons had undergone. When his doctor was preparing Clemons for the carpal tunnel syndrome operation, he was taken off this blood thinning medication but he was not prescribed anything to replace it.
His family believe that the doctors and clinics involved in Clemons carpal tunnel syndrome operation were negligent in their care for him as they didn’t prescribe an alternate blood thinning medication that would have in fact prevented Clemons from suffering a stroke, a direct result of a negative blood clot forming.
As you can see, anybody can be affected by medical negligence, and such a simple thing as forgetting or refusing to provide a replacement medication can lead to disastrous complications and consequences.