Medical malpractice is more common than people realize. For this reason, it’s important that when you’re a patient, you become closely involved in your own medical care. You need to be able to understand your diagnosis and treatment plan and identify the many types of medical negligence that could lead to a malpractice lawsuit.
What Is Medical Malpractice?
Medical malpractice comes in many forms and may look different from case to case. In general, a medical malpractice claim must show that:
- A relationship between the healthcare worker and the patient existed
- The doctor (or other medical professional) made a mistake or was negligent in some way
- The patient suffered harm
- The doctor’s negligence directly led to the patient’s harm
Medical Malpractice Happens in Many Areas of Practice
Patients who become familiar with the many types of medical malpractice may be better prepared to self-advocate in the event they fall victim to a medical mistake. As a patient, it’s important you do your best to understand your treatment plan, procedures, and diagnoses to avoid a medical malpractice incident, including events such as:
- Diagnosis errors. These include a missed, delayed, or incorrect diagnosis—which can lead to a worsened condition or treatment errors.
- Medication errors. These could involve the wrong dosage, wrong medication, improper administration, or a pharmacy error.
- Surgical errors. These may include nerve damage, failure to control bleeding, leaving behind a surgical object, wrong surgical location, and even incorrect surgery or wrong patient.
- Anesthesia errors. These most commonly involve the anesthesiologist giving too much or too little anesthetic.
- Pregnancy or birth errors. These could include mistakes during the first check-up, during the pregnancy, and through the delivery process. A doctor may miss risk factors, use surgical tools improperly, use excessive force, or fail to properly monitor the baby and the mother.
Finally, it’s important to note that you are not responsible for a doctor who makes mistakes. Although it’s prudent to be prepared and educated, it’s not your fault when any medical professional is negligent and causes you harm.
Our Attorneys Can Help You
If a doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or other medical professional recently caused harm to you or someone you love, contact an attorney as soon as possible. The Holton Law Firm has been representing patients for years, providing them with personalized legal services—and we can do the same for you. To schedule a free consultation and case evaluation, fill out the online contact form on our website today.