SIOUX CITY, Iowa — A family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit alleging medical negligence against Mercy Medical Center in Sioux City.
Trial lawyers say in a release that Michael Dreckman died in the ICU after he flatlined and staff did not respond for over five minutes.
According to court records, on September 10, 2021, Michael A. Dreckman, age 65, was admitted to Mercy Medical Center in Sioux City, Iowa for acute coronary syndrome. Dreckman underwent a successful surgery five days later. Following the surgery, Dreckman was admitted to the intensive care unit at Mercy Medical Center. Two days after the surgery he was sitting up and walking. However, on the third day after the surgery, his heart began beating rapidly. Staff at Mercy Medical Center administered amiodarone at 3:34 a.m., 4:53 a.m., and 6:54 a.m., and he was also started on an intravenous drip of amiodarone. Combined, this allegedly amounted to a toxic dose of amiodarone.
Documents say based on telemetry tracings, on September 18, 2021, Dreckman’s heart rate slowed down. Shortly after his heart rate went into heart block with long life-threatening pauses in his heartbeat , followed by intermittent slow beats. Despite Dreckman supposedly being monitored by telemetry, Mercy Medical Center staff did not respond.
On September 18, 2021, Dreckman’s wife Mary Kay and daughter walked into Dreckman’s hospital room and saw that he was unresponsive and grey, with his monitor flashing and beeping and no Mercy Medical Center staff attending to him. Ms. Nash ran into the hall and shouted, “We need help in here. We need help.”
Documents say two nurses then came into Dreckman’s room. At approximately 8:25 a.m. a Code Blue was activated, with chest compressions starting at 8:25 a.m. Dreckman was given multiple rounds of epinephrine, bicarbonate, and calcium, and one shock was attempted, but he remained in a state of cardiac arrest. His chest was opened, and there was cardiac standstill. Dreckman was pronounced dead.
The complaint alleges negligence and vicarious liability for giving Mr. Dreckman a toxic dose of amiodarone, failing to monitor his vital signs, and more.
The case was filed Tuesday morning in Woodbury County, Iowa.
MercyOne released a statement to Siouxland News saying, "Safety of our patients, colleagues and communities is a top priority at MercyOne. We are saddened by the loss of Mr. Dreckman and our thoughts and prayers are with the family during this time. As this is an active legal matter, we are unable to provide further comment."