There are few relationships in our lives that are more important and intimate than that with our medical providers.
Throughout our entire lives, we are taught to put our faith and trust in those in the medical community who have trained and taken sworn oaths to care for us as their patients, promising to “first do no harm.”
Medical professionals deserve our respect for the type of work they do. And most of them do their work with thoughtfulness, compassion, and our well-being in mind.
But when an interaction with a medical provider ends up causing us or a loved one more harm than good, we are often left confused, scared, and feeling betrayed.
Even worse, we may try to take the blame ourselves, or wonder if there was something we could have done differently to change the outcome.
For anyone who finds themselves in the position of having experienced an event with a medical provider that resulted in a condition being worse than it was before you sought medical help or advice, you may have been a victim of medical malpractice.
In these situations, we are left to decide for ourselves if the risks associated with the course of action are worth the potential downsides.
But sometimes a physician or other healthcare professional will make a decision that proves to be negligent or careless on their part and deviates from the standards that are set in their profession.
In a situation like this, you – as the patient – have every right to feel victimized and wonder if there is reason to consider this a personal injury case.
Medical malpractice is one of the most complicated areas of personal injury law and you would greatly benefit from talking to a personal injury lawyer about your situation before you make any decisions as to how to move forward after the incident has occurred.
What Is the Definition of Medical Malpractice and Personal Injury Law?
Any personal injury law firm that takes cases that involve medical malpractice would most likely define it as the legal term that refers to a physician, physician’s assistant, nurse, or other healthcare provider acting in a negligent manner toward a patient that then results in injury to that patient or even death.
Medical professions have specific codes of conduct that give them the accepted standard of care within their profession.
And when their carelessness, thoughtlessness, lack of education, or arrogance goes against those standards of care, then a patient can be the one who suffers because of it.
Personal injury lawyers take medical personal injury cases very seriously. As professionals themselves who have a very specific code of ethics and conduct, a personal injury attorney knows the importance of conducting themselves in a way that always has their client’s best interest in mind.
Physicians and other healthcare leaders have this same level of responsibility to their patients, who also have the same level of vulnerability with their doctors.
Do All Personal Injury Lawyers Take on Medical Malpractice Cases?
As previously mentioned, cases that involve a medical procedure or other medical incidents can be extremely complex and complicated for a personal injury lawyer to try and litigate.
Physicians and other healthcare professionals must carry malpractice insurance for incidences such as these, and the insurance companies that underwrite those policies have a strong interest in fighting any claim made against their clients.
A personal injury lawyer that takes on medical cases must have a strong understanding of the medical laws in their jurisdiction as well as a vast knowledge of medical procedures in general and what types of situations are and are not considered to be outside of a medical person’s code of conduct.
They also need to have a strong knowledge about each insurance company they may have to face in court, what sort of tactics they will attempt to use and whether or not they are the type of insurance company that will be interested in settling or whether they have a stronger tendency to take a personal injury case to court.
And while all personal injury lawyers want to help their clients find justice as well as the financial compensation they need, certain personal injury lawyers are going to be better at medical malpractice cases than others.
All this to say that it’s important you do your research and make sure the personal injury attorney you choose for your medical case is the best personal injury lawyer for handling medical cases.
What Constitutes a Medical Malpractice Personal Injury Case?
In order to avoid some of the confusion before you make that initial call to some personal injury law firms, let’s look at some of the most common incidents that constitute a personal injury case of medical malpractice every year.
Failure to Prescribe the Right Medication or Right Dose of Medicine
In the United States, failure to prescribe the right medication or prescribe the right dose of medication is the number one reason that personal injury cases are filed.
And this does not just affect physicians.
Though there are plenty of incidents where a doctor wrote the wrong medication dose, or prescribed the wrong medication, there are also plenty of examples of a pharmacist giving out the wrong medicine or dosage, or a nurse calling in the medication and not reading the physician’s prescription correctly.
In fact, the potential for error when it comes to medications is so high that doctors, pharmacists, and nurses are all heavily trained in this area and spend a significant amount of time learning about the importance of proper dosage and the consequences of a medication being dispensed incorrectly.
Administering the wrong dose of a medication doesn’t always end poorly. Oftentimes it is caught early enough to cause no harm to the patient, or the effects of the mis-dosage are not severe enough to cause great harm.
But this is not always the case.
Many of our prescription drugs that are on the market today can have grave consequences if not administered properly or without certain warnings as to what can be consumed in relation to them, how often they can be consumed, or what types of side effects they can cause.
Sometimes these consequences can even lead to death.
If you or someone you love has been a victim of mis-dosed medication or a wrong medication altogether that resulted in harm, you need to reach out to a personal injury attorney today to help you get the support and compensation you need.
And – if a medication error has resulted in a loved one’s death – an experienced personal injury lawyer will explain the process for filing a wrongful death case on that person’s behalf.
Not Diagnosing a Serious Condition
Another all-too-common reason for filing a personal injury claim against a physician or other medical person is when a serious condition goes undiagnosed or misdiagnosed.
Sadly, when something like this happens, it oftentimes may result in the injury victim’s death before the mistake is discovered.
We all know that doctors have complicated professions and are responsible for knowing and retaining a vast amount of information.
But let’s face it. This is what they have trained for.
Failing to do their job properly is something they should be held accountable for, just like in any other profession.
Doctors are responsible for diagnosing problems and diseases in their patients, and they are trusted to do so.
They are also expected to be able to identify any potential complications that may arise from a certain treatment or course of care.
We know doctors are human, like the rest of us. That said, a good physician knows the importance of not missing a diagnosis and will time the time to ensure that he or she has not overlooked something that may be a potential problem that is not presenting itself right away.
This may be because the doctor didn’t pay enough attention to their patient. Or, they may have failed to ask the right questions to find out whether the patient has a condition that needs to be treated.
That physician should be held accountable for their actions and therefore subjected to a personal injury lawsuit.
The best personal injury attorneys will be able to look at a medical case and determine whether a physician’s misdiagnosis was reasonable, given the circumstances, or whether it was truly negligence on the doctor’s part.
Diagnosing a Patient with a Condition that Isn’t Present
This situation is quite different from the one above but is just as common in today’s medical world.
Sometimes a physician would rather overdiagnose a patient than spend the time processing their symptoms and deciding what the best course of care should be.
They may decide to err on the side of caution and treat a patient with more invasive aggressive measures than is actually necessary.
When this happens, a patient can end up being just as harmed as when they don’t get enough care. For example, let’s say a primary care doctor decides that a patient has diabetes and begins them on an intensive course of insulin, even though they aren’t diabetic.
Giving a person insulin when they don’t need it can be dangerous and cause them to experience hypoglycemia, which can cause irregular or rapid heartbeat.
Eventually, if left untreated, hypoglycemia can cause a person’s death.
Another example is a patient who presents to their healthcare provider with symptoms of a urinary tract infection, but their physician decides it’s just menstrual cramps and sends them home empty-handed.
The problem is that a urinary tract infection – if left untreated – can eventually result in sepsis, which is an infection in the bloodstream and is often fatal.
Sometimes that physician has had poor training and they aren’t equipped to practice medicine in the manner they are expected to.
Other times, a physician may have overwhelmed themselves with too many patients and they don’t have the time to give each one the adequate attention they deserve.
And sometimes misdiagnosis can come from a physician who has grown complacent or feels they have “seen everything.” These types of physicians may overlook certain symptoms out of a sense of confidence that allows them to operate from a place of “auto-pilot.”
No matter what the rationale, a physician who is incapable of providing the correct diagnosis to a patient and then causes them harm should be held responsible for their actions and expected to face a personal injury lawyer in a court of law.
Where Are the Best Personal Injury Attorneys for Medical Malpractice Cases in Los Angeles?
When you have determined that you think you may have a personal injury medical case on your hands, you will want to reach out to an experienced personal injury attorney who understands the complexities around a medical malpractice lawsuit.
An experienced personal injury attorney will be able to sit with you and discuss the specifics of your potential personal injury case and ask the appropriate questions to determine whether or not they think you can receive the justice and financial compensation after what you have endured.
When someone else’s negligence – especially your trusted physician’s -results in your medical treatment causing you harm, you must make sure that you find the best personal injury lawyers to help you navigate through the challenges of a case like this.
But make sure you do your research before you make your final decision.
The Law Firm of John J. Perlstein: The Best Personal Injury Lawyers Who Can Help You
When you have suffered from a medical treatment or incident that has left you injured or with long-term injuries that may need medical treatments for years to come, please consider reaching out to the law firm of John J. Perlstein for the best personal injury lawyers in Los Angeles, CA.
Located in Los Angeles, CA, we have served clients in Southern California for over 25 years.
Your personal injury lawyer will discuss with you the details of your case and will work with you to decide what the best course of action is going to be in order for us to get you the financial compensation you deserve.
Whether you need money to help with lost wages, medical bills, or ongoing family needs, our lawyers are experts in the area of getting you the financial help after a personal injury has occurred.
If you are ready to find out how you can get the much-needed support you have been waiting for with your personal injury claim, give the personal injury law offices of John J. Perlstein a call today.