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Levine and Slavit, PLLC - Blog

Personal Injury Attorneys - Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Long Island and the Bronx

Drug Makers Fail To Disclose Zetia's Serious Health Risks

Posted On Jan 8, 2008 @ 10:22 AM by SEO Admin

Drug makers Merck and Schering-Plough never published the results of studies regarding Zetia, an anti-hyperlipidemic drug often prescribed to lower cholesterol levels. The studies raise issues about Zetias effect on the liver. Enhance, one research study of Zetia, was completed in April of 2006. The results of Enhance have recently been discovered. The study contains information about Zetias risks on the liver. Some patients showed elevated liver enzymes and were dropped from the study. Merck and Schering-Plough who have been criticized for not releasing the results of the Enhance study, are said to probably earn around $5 billion from Zetia sales this year. Doctors have claimed that Merck and Schering-Ploughs failure to disclose the results of their research promptly could have left the public with a view of Zetia that is misleading and more favorable in terms of its benefits and safety. The studies were conducted from 2000 to 2003 and were not posted on

F.B.I. Investigating Purported Failure to Test More than 200,000 Used Football Helmets At a Time When More College Players are Sustaining Concussions

Posted On Dec 23, 2007 @ 11:53 AM by SEO Admin

The F.B.I. is investigating how it was that more than 200,000 amateur football players in the United States wore used helmets this fall that were returned to the field without proper testing. The investigation concerns the purported failure of Circle System Inc., of Easton, Pa., in an apparent effort to save on labor and insurance costs, to perform a formal drop-testing procedure in which helmets are subjected to strong forces in different locations on about 2 percent of the helmets they handle as part of a safety protocol mandated by the National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment (Nocsae). The helmets in question were used by football players ranging from 8-year-olds to Division I collegians. Helmets that crack or otherwise fail this test are supposed to be destroyed because they could leave the player susceptible to a fractured skull or brain hemorrhage. Although about 5 to 10 youngsters a year sustain such injuries, helmets have been cons

Lead Paint on Toys, Magnets that Perforate Intestines, Beads that Turn into "Date Rape Drug", and Now Asbestos: What's Next for Our Children?

Posted On Dec 20, 2007 @ 09:54 AM by SEO Admin

As if it was not enough to learn that there is lead paint on toys, that small magnets can come loose from toys and perforate intestines, and that children's Aqua Dots beads turn into "Date Rape Drug", now asbestos has been found in a variety of consumer products, including one of this season's biggest-selling Christmas toys, the CSI Fingerprint Examination Kit. The kit, made in China, is one of several items licensed by CBS after its popular "CSI" science-crime shows. The model has an array of plastic tools, inks and three types of very fine powders -- white, black and glow-in-the-dark. High levels of two types of asbestos were found in the white and the glow powder. Asbestos was also found in two brands of children's play clay, powdered cleanser, roof sealers, duct tapes, window glazing, spackling paste a

NY Consumer Protection Board Finds Toys With Unsafe Lead Levels Remain on Store Shelves

Posted On Dec 17, 2007 @ 11:01 AM by SEO Admin

The state Consumer Protection Board's (CPB) Safe Toys NY Campaign has found that toys with unsafe lead levels remain on store shelves across the state, Governor Eliot Spitzer announced last week. The CPB, with the help of the Departments of Health (DOH) and Agriculture and Markets, conducted sweeps of more than 2,800 stores looking for recalled products and found approximately 620 recalled toy items still on the shelves. The CPB launched Safe Toys NY, a massive public awareness campaign, in November to assist consumers in discerning the safety of toys, to educate consumers, inform toy makers and retailers about safety issues, and ensure that recalled toys were removed from store shelves. The CPB sent letters to retailers, including thrift stores, urging them to be extra-vigilant, evaluate all toys being sold or donated against recall lists, and post recall notices conspicuously in their stores. The CPB also called for auction sites to bar the posting and sale of recall

Mystery Surrounds How One Window Washer But Not Other Survived 47 Floor Plunge From Scaffolding Previously Cited for 10 Violations

Posted On Dec 14, 2007 @ 09:31 PM by SEO Admin

The scaffoldingthat broke last Friday (12/7/07), causing a pair of brother window washers to plunge 47 stories (550 feet) on Manhattan's upper East Side, had been cited for 10 violations in June, including four that were repeat violations, state records show. Inspection records from the New York State Labor Department show that the scaffolding had been inspected twice in the past two years - and 10 violations were issued, but they were not severe enough to warrant a stop-work order. Why one brother died and the other survived is a mystery. Speculation is that while they tried to ride their platform to the ground, as one window washer said he had been trained to do in such an accident, one of the brothers, Edgar Moreno, may have been thrown off of the platform before it hit the ground. His brother, Alcides Moreno, though seriously injured, was conscious and sitting up soon after firefighters arrived. Alcides Moreno's injuries include collapsed lungs, damaged kidn

8,500 More Patients of Dr. Harvey Finkelstein are Advised to Get Tested as Tests Find Additional Hepatitis Cases Among His Patients

Posted On Dec 12, 2007 @ 01:33 PM by SEO Admin

Approximately 8,500 additional patients of Dr. Harvey Finkelstein will be advised to get tested for blood-borne diseases as a probe into his practice expands, a New York State Health Department spokeswoman said. Meanwhile, the Nassau County Health Department has said recent tests found six hepatitis B cases and six hepatitis C cases among Finkelstein's patients, although it is unclear whether the liver infections stemmed from Finkelstein's improper re-use of syringes. Initially this past November, 628 patients of Dr. Finkelstein were advised to get tested for hepatitis B and C and HIV, all blood borne diseases, because they had received epidural injections from Dr. Finkelstein, whoused re-used syringes, from January 1, 2000 to January 15, 200. But as time goes on, the Department of Health continues to receive calls from people who state that they were patients of Dr. Finkelstein and received injections from h

Results of Survey of Practicing Doctors Renew Doubts Regarding the Medical Profession's Ability to Regulate Itself

Posted On Dec 10, 2007 @ 09:05 AM by Ira Slavit

A survey of a national random sample of practicing doctors found that nearly half of all U.S. doctors fail to report incompetent or unethical colleagues, even though they agree that such mistakes should be reported. More specifically, while 96% of respondents said doctors should always report impaired or incompetent colleagues, only 55% of those with direct personal knowledge of such doctors in the past three years said they always did so. And while 93% of respondents said doctors should always alert authorities when they observe serious medical errors, only 54% of those who had such information in the past three years said they always did so. 40 percentof the doctors said they knew of a serious medical error in their hospital group or practice but 31 percent admitted they had done nothing about it at least once. The findings appear in the Annals of Internal Medicine. The researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital mailed a survey, and a $20 incentive

NY State Senator to Craft Bill to Open Doctor Disciplinary Process

Posted On Dec 8, 2007 @ 04:22 AM by SEO Admin

State Senator Kemp Hannon said at a hearing held at Farmingdale State College to address questions surrounding the transmission of hepatitis C in the medical offices of Dr. Harvey Finkelstein that he would propose legislation to speed the notification of patients infected after improper practices and to make pubic charges brought against doctors by the Office of Professional Medical Conduct (OMPC), the state disciplinary board for doctors. The OMPC has come under heavy criticism for not disciplining Dr. Finkelstein for engaging in improper infection control procedures. Criticism of the OPMC apparently contributed to the OPMC's suspension of an ophthalmologist, Dr. Martin Ehrenberg, this past Thursday (12/6/07) for allegedly performing unnecessary laser eye surgeries on six patients. The six patients were diagnosed with ailments including diabetic retinopathy, wet macular degeneration and cataracts. The New York Dep

Hospital's Mistaken Medication Overdose of Dennis Quaid's 2-Week Old Twins Underscores a Big Problem in Health System

Posted On Dec 4, 2007 @ 08:29 AM by SEO Admin

Each year at least 1.5 million Americans are injured - and 15,000 die - after receiving the wrong medication or an incorrect dose, says the federal Institute of Medicine. Such incidents have more than doubled in the past decade. Causes include pharmacists stocking drugs improperly, nurses not double-checking to make sure they are dispensing the proper medication, illegible handwriting by doctors, and similarities between names of different drugs. In the incident involving Dennis Quaid's 2-week old twins, they were given 1,000 times the intended dosage of the blood thinner Heparin at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, one of the top hospitals in the country, which has called it a "preventable error." The babies were supposed to have received 10 units per millimeter of the anticoagulant to keep their IVs from clotting, but instead were given 10,000 units per millimeter. This case is similar to a situation that occurred at Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis last year when thre

Latest Brain Scan Technology May Help Increase Recovery for Conscious Pain and Suffering of "Vegetative" People

Posted On Dec 1, 2007 @ 10:47 AM by Ira Slavit

Brain scans using the most recent technologies are challenging the decade-old doctors' assumption that patients who have been diagnosed as vegetative lack any capacity for conscious thought. Most of these patients are previously healthy people who suffered a traumatic brain injury such as in a car accident, or oxygen deprivation after a heart attack or stroke or perhaps even due to medical malpractice. Although most brain scans show what is wrong with someone's brain, sophisticated brain scans are showing what parts of the brain are working, with surprising results.What is lacking in these patients is not necessarily some level of awareness, but rather the ability to communicate their awareness of themselves or their environment. The courts in New York require that in order for a person in a vegetative state to recover an awar

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