American Airlines sued over death of nurse who had embolism on flight
Newlywed nurse, 25, dies after suffering an embolism on American Airlines flight and pilot ‘refused’ to divert despite on board doctor’s pleas
- Brittany Oswell became ‘dizzy and disoriented’ three hours into the 2016 flight
- The 25-year-old was flying from Honolulu to Texas with her military husband
- She passed out in the bathroom where she vomited and defecated on herself
- A doctor who was also a passenger pleaded with the pilot to divert the plane
- They carried on flying and Brittany passed out again then stopped breathing
- Her family says a defibrillator on the plane did not work when they tried to use it
- By the time they landed in Texas, four hours after the problems began, she had stopped breathing
- She was declared brain dead in hospital three days later as a result of the embolism
- Now, her family is suing American claiming it could have prevented her death
A newlywed nurse died on an American Airlines flight after suffering an embolism and passing out in the bathroom while the pilot refused to divert the plane despite an onboard doctor’s pleas to land, it has been claimed.
Brittany Oswell died three days after the flight from Hawaii to Texas in April 2016.
She was on the plane with her military husband Cory and were on their way home to South Carolina.
After passing out several times on the plane, her pulse stopped while flight attendants and a doctor gave her CPR in the plane galley after pleading with the captain to make an emergency landing.
They refused to numerous times after speaking to an on-call doctor on the ground, it is claimed.
Brittany Oswell, a 25-year-old nurse from South Carolina, died three days after suffering a pulmonary embolism and cardiac arrest on an American Airlines flight. She never regained consciousness after passing out on the plane where a doctor, who was also a passenger, pleaded with the captain to divert which they never did
When the plane finally landed in Dallas, four hours after she first passed out, she was unconscious. She was taken to hospital but was declared brain dead three days later with the cause of death given as cardiac arrest prompted by a pulmonary embolism.
Brittany was flying with her military husband Cory, who she had been married to for less than a year, her family says
Now, her husband and parents are suing the airline, claiming it could have prevented her death by getting her the help she needed sooner.
Brittany and her husband had been married for less than a year when she died.
On April 15, 2016, they boarded their flight in Hawaii, where he was stationed in the military, at 8pm.
Three hours into the flight, Brittany became ‘disoriented and dizzy’.
Flight attendants watched her as she slurred her speech then fainted, according to a lawsuit filed by her family last week.
She quickly regained consciousness but, around an hour or two later, she went to the bathroom and passed out after vomiting and defecating on herself.
The doctor who had examined her first then urged the pilot to divert the plane so that she could get medical attention but, according to the woman’s family, they refused.
As the plane flew on towards Texas, the crew and doctor moved her from the bathroom to the galley to try to wake her up.
She regained consciousness again, they said, but when the doctor tried to measure her blood pressure, the equipment was faulty and would not take a reading.
The lawsuit claims that the flight captain was asleep during the first portion of the ordeal and had to be ‘wakened’ before they spoke to the doctor.
Brittany became dizzy and disoriented three hours into the flight then never recovered fully but dipped in and out of consciousness until she eventually stopped breathing while lying in the galley of the plane as flight attendants and the doctor performed CPR. The defibrillator they tried to use to keep her alive did not work, they said
After being summoned to the flight deck where they reported the seriousness of her condition, the pilot consulted with an on-call American Airlines doctor on the ground then decided to carry on flying to Texas which would take another 90 minutes.
Five minutes later, the doctor returned to the galley where Brittany remained.
It was then, her family claims, that her pulse stopped and she stopped breathing.
The doctor tried to perform CPR and use a defibrillator to revive her but claims no shock came out of the pads as it should, the lawsuit claims.
‘After Brittany’s pulse stopped, the doctor and the flight attendants placed the AED pads on Brittany’s chest and attempted to turn on the current.
‘However… the AED reported that no shock was administered despite three attempts. The plaintiffs are informed and believe the doctor and the flight attendants then took turns administering CPR to Brittany.’
American Airlines has not yet given a detailed response to the woman’s family’s claims. A spokesman for the airline said it was looking over the complaint
The doctor then gave her a shot of epinephrine to try to revive her but it did not work.
When the plane landed in Dallas at 8.40am, she was taken straight to hospital by emergency staff.
Once there, doctors noted huge brain damage caused by the cardiac arrest and embolism.
She suffered a second embolism while in the hospital and on April 18, was declared dead.
Her parents Tina and Christopher filed the lawsuit against American Airlines in South Carolina on the second anniversary of her death, along with her widower Cory.
They say it is entirely American Airlines’ fault that she died and that she could have been saved if the plane was grounded and the proper help was sought immediately.
Lawyer Brad Cranshaw told DailyMail.com that her fate was sealed by the airline’s staff’s actions.
‘When Brittany got on the plane, she stepped into her coffin. It’s a tragedy,’ he said.
American Airlines said it was examining the complaint but would not yet respond to the allegations.
‘We take the safety of our passengers very seriously and we are looking into the details of the complaint,’ a spokesman told DailyMail.com.
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