When doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and other medical professionals make mistakes, the repercussions can be life-altering or even fatal. Patients literally put their lives in their doctors’ hands, and as a result, medical professionals have a significant amount of responsibility when things go wrong. Everyone makes mistakes, but if a doctor acts negligently or makes an error that another qualified doctor would not have made, they could be held liable for the resulting damages.
If you are dealing with a serious injury, illness, or other medical condition that occurred as the result of medical carelessness or a doctor error, you may have a medical malpractice case on your hands.
The most common medical malpractice issues include:
- Misdiagnosis: A doctor might provide you with an incorrect diagnosis either because he/she did not order enough tests, overlooked an important symptom, failed to run certain diagnostics, or because of some other type of mistake or oversight. As a result, a misdiagnosis could lead a patient to undergo unnecessary treatments for an ailment they do not have, which would, in turn, delay the necessary treatment. Depending on the issue at hand, a misdiagnosis could lead the patient to suffer additional harm or the repercussions could be fatal.
- Medication mistakes: Ensuring each patient receives the correct type of medication and dosage is of the utmost importance. A negligent doctor might prescribe the wrong medication, incorrect dosages, or they might overlook a deadly allergy. Conversely, pharmacists might make mistakes while filling prescriptions, which can be extremely harmful, or even fatal. Also, with the opioid epidemic looming over us, it’s also possible a doctor might make an unnecessary prescription for opioids, which could spark a dangerous addiction or overdose.
- Failure to treat: We go to doctors to seek treatment, so when a doctor fails to provide proper treatment, either because he/she overlooks the symptoms or downplays them, it could cause the patient serious harm. Failure to treat serious issues, such as stroke, heart attack, brain aneurysm, dangerous fractures, blood clots, and other life-threatening issues can be fatal.
- Delayed diagnosis: Timely medical treatment should be the norm, however, major delays occur all too often. If a necessary medical test is delayed, or if a doctor fails to provide timely treatment or diagnosis, it could ultimately delay the patient’s treatment, which can be dangerous. A delay in diagnosis could cause the patient irreparable harm and may leave the major, long-lasting side effects.
- Surgical errors: During surgery, doctors must exercise the utmost care for their patients. Also, anesthesiologists must be cautious when administering the right dosage of medication to keep the patient under without giving them dangerous amounts of medication. Additionally, the hospital could make a clerical mistake, or they might move patients to the wrong operating rooms, which could lead doctors to perform the wrong type of surgery on a patient. Or, unsanitary or faulty equipment might cause damaging issues during surgery.
- Birth injuries: A child’s birth should be a beautiful thing, but if the doctor, nurse, midwife, or anesthesiologist makes a mistake, it could endanger the life of the mother and child, potentially causing birth injuries. If a baby is deprived of oxygen during the birth process, or if the fetal heart rate reaches dangerous levels, the child could suffer from serious disabilities, such as cerebral palsy. Mistakes involving birth tools, fetal heart rate monitors, C-sections, maternal blood testing, and genetic testing can also lead to serious harm. Ultimately, if any of the medical professionals attending to the mother and child during delivery makes a mistake or acts negligently, they could be held liable for the resulting damage.
If you think you have the makings of a medical malpractice case, our firm is prepared to help you seek justice and responsibility. We have ample experience advocating for the injured, and we want to help medical malpractice victims hold the liable party responsible for the harm they caused.
To get started on your injury case today, contact Clark, Fountain, La Vista, Prather & Littky-Rubin.