In the world of the healthcare industry, any mention of malpractice is enough to unsettle anyone due to its negative connotations. When doctors think of medical malpractice, they’ll often remember fear, anger, and confusion, as the malpractice lawsuits are not really as simple as they seem. In fact, because they are so complicated, medical lawsuits often don’t end up with the desired results for the concerned parties. It can certainly affect the image of a doctor, if not the hospital in which he works, leading to a general feeling of distrust for that rest of the doctor’s medical career.
Patients who file lawsuits for malpractice, on the other hand, have a solid reason for doing so, often because of negligence, which leads to physical or emotional torment to the patient. These kinds of mistakes are irreversible, and patients who suffer their consequences will have to deal with pain (and sometimes trauma) for the rest of their lives. So, in case anyone finds themselves in this situation, a solid background on what medical malpractice entails is necessary, which we provide here in detail.
Worsening of the Original Condition
Misdiagnosis is often the main reason why a patient can file for a lawsuit. When a patient is misdiagnosed due to a doctor’s carelessness or negligence, he may be treated for the wrong condition and his physical health may deteriorate before knowing what is actually causing him to be ill. This patient may later receive a proper diagnosis, but in most cases, it is already too late to treat the patient and he may already be suffering from permanent damage.
In medical examinations, a single delay in tests on the medical practitioner’s part can lead to fatal consequences for the patient and legal consequences for the medical practitioner. Options for the harmed patient, in that case, are scarce, but if you click here, focusing on hiring a specialized medical malpractice lawyer and filing a lawsuit is the best course of action. This is because medical malpractice lawyers will know more about this and will have more knowledge on how to win with this kind of case.
Failure to Treat May Lead to Physical and Financial Suffering
Sometimes, it’s hard to imagine any respectful doctor failing to diagnose a patient’s condition, but it so often happens without us patients knowing. Doctors go through years of practice and learning all there is about their field, so it’s hard to imagine them making mistakes, but they can make mistakes as well. When these mistakes are made due to negligence or medical errors, then this can be considered a case of medical malpractice. A doctor may succeed in diagnosing a patient’s condition, but may fail in:
- assessing and monitoring the patient’s condition.
- running necessary tests.
- Referring the patient to a specialist when necessary.
- Informing the patient of available medications and treatments.
- Treating the patient due to wrong insurance of lack of insurance.
- Adhering to patient care standards.
In addition to this, there are also cases in which the doctor may inadvertently withhold information pertaining to the treatment of the patient and fail to relay the necessary information relating to the condition to the patient. All of this can lead to physical suffering, like birth defects, disabilities, pain, disfigurement, more medical expenses, and loss of employment due to physical injury.
Development of Separate Condition
It isn’t far-fetched that a patient will develop a certain condition due to medical malpractice. When a patient is treated for the wrong condition or disease, the side effects of that treatment might elicit the development of another condition. This can sometimes be hard to determine and a patient might not find out at all that he is suffering an additional condition up until he gets proper diagnosis from another doctor. Results can be fatal and might even cause permanent physical harm to the patient.
Of course, the occurrence of a second condition will lead to extra medical bills and more treatments, all of which will contribute to the patient’s suffering and affect his financial expenses. While this can be a particularly hard time to go through, it is one of the most critical situations in which a patient needs to file a lawsuit to compensate for his suffering, especially if the secondary condition leads to serious harm or permanent damage. This can be a difficult time to think about the specifics of a malpractice lawsuit, so hiring a malpractice lawyer to walk you through the steps of filing a lawsuit might be your best option.
Unnecessary surgeries are more associated with malpractice lawsuits than any other consequence on this list. For example, some obstetricians may perform a C-section on a woman who doesn’t need it, which can endanger both her life and her baby’s. Legal opinions say that identifying a surgery as “unnecessary” can only be achieved by consulting an expert on the matter. An expert witness should be aware of your condition both pre-surgery and post-surgery, the procedures undertaken by your doctor, and the opinion of medical textbooks.
There are cases in which a surgeon fails to inform you of the risks that follow a certain surgery. For example, you may choose not to have a surgery that will require 3 months for recuperation and lead to permanent pain, but you might undergo this surgery anyway due to your surgeon neglecting to tell you of the consequences of such a surgery. If an expert eyewitness can validate that this was true, then you have the right to file a lawsuit.
More Consequences to Uninformed Consent
As mentioned in the previous point, lack of information pertinent to a patient’s treatment, surgery, tests, and/or any information that can invariably affect the patient’s decision to a certain procedure will certainly lead to surgical errors, complications in treatment, and exacerbation of the condition. This can lead to more unnecessary medical expenses or a prolonged recuperation period, which can affect a person’s life and lead to unemployment. This is known as a lack of informed consent, which is the legal right to any patient. When a medical practitioner fails to grant it to the patient, serious legal consequences will follow.
Medical malpractice is complex and involves a lot of elements and details that contribute to malpractice lawsuits. This is why the need for a lawyer who is well versed in this specific area of law is necessary, especially if physical and emotional damage inflicted on the patient calls for adequate compensation.