The Risk of Radiation Overexposure in Medical Treatment
Radiation therapy has long been used to treat a variety of medical conditions, most often to treat different forms of cancer. Medical professionals have long known the risks associated with overexposure, so the technology has been sparingly employed, particularly as other forms of treatment, such as chemotherapy, prove more effective.
Earlier this summer, though, the Centracare Health Coborn Cancer Center in St. Cloud, Minnesota, revealed that some of its patients had received incorrect dosages of radiation in the summer of 2012. The facility admitted that the mistakes were human error, and acknowledged that the negligence may have caused burns or tissue damage. The facility said that most of the patients who received incorrect amounts of radiation were undertreated, which means they have a greater likelihood of the recurrence of cancer.
Medical professionals use three types of radiation:
- Alpha radiation, the least powerful type, has been used successfully in prostate cancer trials. It is ingested through medication.
- Beta radiation, also used in radiopharmaceutical products, is customarily used to treat thyroid disorders
- Gamma radiation, the strongest type of treatment, has been used as an aggressive cancer treatment. Medical professionals use a machine called a linear accelerator to create the gamma rays.
Whether you have been under-exposed or over-exposed to radiation, you can pursue damages for any injuries suffered, under a legal theory of negligence. Facilities and technicians who administer radiation treatments are typically required to perform their duties in accordance with commonly accepted standards within their profession. If they fail to do so, and you suffer any loss, you can seek compensation.
Contact Attorney Howard D. Popper
To learn your options when you have suffered a personal injury on the job, contact our office online or call attorney Popper at 973-993-8787. We have offices in Morristown and Newton, but will come to your home or the hospital, if necessary. There is no charge for your first consultation.
We handle all personal injury claims on a contingency basis. You won’t be charged any legal fees unless attorney Popper recovers compensation for your losses.