Medical professionals rely heavily on equipment to help them properly diagnose their patients. Theranos, a company that offers healthcare professionals one-drop blood analysis, is now facing a lawsuit for faulty blood tests. In a TechCrunch article in July of this year, the lawsuit was highlighted. An ex-customer of Theranos has filed a suit alleging that the company’s faulty blood tests resulted in a heart attack.
The lawsuit was filed in Arizona and it is one of nine suits filed against the company. Theranos has already faced investigations into their technology, and these investigations are what prompted several lawsuits. The man who filed his lawsuit in Arizona stated that Theranos and their partner, Walgreens, offered false and misleading marketing around their tests and the accuracy of those test results. This resulted in patients being unable to do the right thing for themselves. The Arizona man is also suing Walgreens, accusing them of blindly jumping into partnership with Theranos.
Walgreens cut ties with Theranos in June and had shut down all 40 blood draw locations in the state. They had cited their cut with a myriad of bad blood test results, and also cited the ongoing federal and criminal investigations currently underway for the blood testing company.
Theranos had claimed that their one-drop analysis could test for hundreds of diseases using a proprietary Edison machine. They stated that these tests were fast, easy, and offered the highest level of quality.
The patient in Arizona stated that his physician ordered him to have his sugar and blood lipid levels tested as part of his routine heart monitoring care plan. The man went to his local Walgreens and had the test performed – because he assumed it would be safe and reliable like Theranos had stated. The tests came back normal; therefore, the man’s doctor recommended that he stick to what he was currently doing to stay healthy.
Less than one month later, the man suffered a heart attack and was admitted to the hospital. It was concerning for treating physicians, because the man’s blood lipid and sugar levels were normal less than one month prior. After performing additional blood work, it was found that Theranos’ blood tests were extremely inaccurate.
The doubts of the treating physicians were validated when Theranos announced that they would void thousands of other test results from 2014 and 2015 to become compliant with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
The man in Arizona is seeking class-action status for his case. He is also seeking damages, including punitive damages, against both parties.
The lawsuit here is nothing new. In fact, misdiagnosis occurs often in the United States and leads to serious complications – even death. In this event, the man’s cardiologist relied on inaccurate test results, but it could be argued that the physician should have performed more professional, thorough blood tests than those done at a pharmacy. That being said, the company’s direct promise for accuracy and their lack of delivering accurate test results is what led them to be sued. While the case has not yet gone to court, Theranos is likely to face more lawsuits in the future.
Physicians should rely on technology to accurately diagnose their patients, but the accuracy of that equipment and technology sometimes plays a role in the physician’s ability to perform his or her duties. If you have been injured because of faulty medical equipment or you were misdiagnosed by a physician, contact a medical malpractice attorney to explore your options. Contact Berkowitz and Hanna LLC today to schedule a no-obligation case evaluation. Call 866-479-7909 or contact us online to get started.