Common Signs of Medical Malpractice

When you go to the doctor about an illness or injury, you expect proper medical treatment. You expect your condition to improve and to feel better. Unfortunately, not everyone is that lucky. Doctors are human, afterall, and they sometimes make mistakes. However, when they do it can be scary, causing undue stress and pain for an affected patient.

Signs of Medical Malpractice

Medical practice in the broadest sense refers to “a hospital, doctor or other health care professional, through a negligent act or omission, causes an injury to a patient. The negligence might be the result of errors in diagnosis, treatment, aftercare or health management.[1]” Each state has different laws governing medical malpractice, so it is important to review what they are in your particular state.

If you suspect you have been a victim of medical malpractice, it is important to first stay calm. Look for these signs to determine if medical malpractice is at play.

  • Failure to diagnose–this is perhaps the most common of all types of medical malpractice, when a disease goes undiagnosed. This can obviously result in complications or even death if the disease advances. In the case of cancer, treatability depends on early diagnosis.
  • Misdiagnosis–just as common (and just as serious) as a failure to properly diagnose a condition. A doctor might diagnose a patient with the wrong condition, attributing their symptoms to something else. You may have received treatment for an affliction that you never actually had in the first place, which can again lead to complications, up to and including death.
  • Doctor admits to making a mistake–if a doctor admits wrongdoing or fault, that is a clear sign that malpractice has occurred. If your doctor, nurse or even dentist admits to making a mistake, you should consult an attorney about a medical malpractice case.
  • Wrong medication or dosage–did you know that a simple error in dosage of something like a blood thinner can lead to a stroke? A drug interaction can lead to injury or death. It is the responsibility of your doctor to review your medical and medication history to look for any potential drug interactions.
  • Symptoms don’t correspond to diagnosis–this corresponds to misdiagnosis. If your symptoms do not match your diagnosis, or a treatment is not working, this is an egregious medical error.
  • A lack of informed consent–medical professionals must review all the potential risks of a procedure with a patient to ensure they understand fully. If this is not done, patients may otherwise agree to procedures they ordinarily would not have had if they were aware of risks involved.
  • Traumatic birth or birth injuries–complications can arise quickly quickly during childbirth, often leading to emergency c-sections or traumatic delivery, which can in turn, cause a birth injury. After birth, doctors and hospital staff are responsibility for administering what is known as an , using a scoring chart.

    A baby with a low APGAR score may have experienced oxygen deprivation or other trauma during birth, which can lead to a brain injury, cerebral palsy and others. While an APGAR score is not the sole determination for whether or not medical malpractice occurred, it is important data to analyze.

If you believe you or a loved one have been a victim of medical malpractice, first contact an attorney. He or she will determine whether or not you have a case and will work hard to get you the compensation you so rightly deserve.

  1. https://www.abpla.org/what-is-malpractice

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