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Navigating a medical malpractice lawsuit requires special skills

Posted in Our Blog on July 2, 2018

Like most other people in Louisiana, you most likely trust that your doctor will provide treatment that will restore your health. Unfortunately, there are no guarantees when it comes to medical care. Doctors, nurses and other caregivers are only human, and they can make mistakes. However, if negligence led to a mistake, you might have grounds for a medical malpractice lawsuit.

Health care providers must provide care of a specific standard, and they are not always liable for injuries their patients suffer during treatment. You can only hold a doctor responsible for damage done to your health if he or she deviated from the standard of care expected, based on the care any competent physician in the same situation would provide.

Errors that could lead to lawsuits

Professional negligence does not only involve doctors. Hospitals and their personnel might be the ones responsible for your injury. The following list shows typical errors that often lead to medical malpractice claims:

  • Prescribing or administering the wrong medication
  • Administering the wrong dosage of medication
  • Misdiagnosis
  • Leaving objects inside the body of the patient after surgery
  • Failure to order necessary tests
  • Hospital neglect causing bedsores
  • Negligent care causing staph infections that could be fatal
  • Failure to get informed consent

What is informed consent?

Before you undergo any treatment or surgical procedure, the doctor must inform you of the details of the proposed treatment or procedure. This includes information about potential risks and after effects and also the consequences of deciding against it. This allows you to make an informed decision about giving your consent to proceed with the suggested treatment or surgery.

If, for example, a surgical procedure could lead to the loss of a limb and the surgeon did not inform you, he or she might be liable if this happens — even if the procedure was successful. The idea is that you might have chosen to opt out had you known that you might lose a limb.

The challenge

You will likely face many obstacles in your pursuit of financial relief. Medical malpractice is a complicated field of the law, and the person best equipped to navigate such a lawsuit is an experienced attorney. Legal counsel can assist with gathering documents and hospital reports to which you might not have access. The lawyer can determine whom to name as defendants. A successful presentation of you claim in a Louisiana civil court might lead to a monetary judgment that will cover your documented claims for financial and emotional damages.