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Faulty science results in medical malpractice lawsuit

Science is a noble profession that is aimed at finding and revealing fundamental truths about the world. This enables human beings to better understand how and why certain phenomena occur. These discoveries can be indispensable information for treating illness and disease in Illinois. However, when a scientist falsifies research data, it can result in a medical malpractice lawsuit.

This is what happened in a recent case involving a medical researcher who had falsified results of his clinical trials. The discredited medical researcher, who worked at Duke University, began to receive complaints in 2008 regarding research submitted to peer-reviewed journals and news publications. However, Duke did not pursue investigation of these complaints until 2010. The university finally began investigating the researcher after The Cancer Letter -- a nationwide research publication -- reported that the researcher had falsified parts of his resume.

The Institute of Medicine eventually began to investigate the case and has reported several issues with how the university had handled the case. Many of the researcher's previous papers have since been retracted. It turns out that many patients participating in the researcher's clinical trials were improperly treated and also had unnecessary chemotherapy.

The medical malpractice lawsuit was filed by 117 patients who claim that participation in the clinical trials resulted in physical and mental injury. The lawsuit was initiated in Oct. 2011, which is almost a year after the researcher had resigned. The lawsuit also named the university and a medical doctor as defendants. Just like in any other medical malpractice lawsuit in Illinois or elsewhere, the plaintiffs have the possibility of obtaining significant monetary reimbursement for damages caused.

Source: dukechronicle.com, "Medical malpractice trial against Duke postponed", Tessa Vellek, Jan. 27, 2015

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