Relying on a doctor to properly take care of and treat any ailments a patient may be suffering is understandable. After all, doctors are bound by their promise and are expected by society to provide the best care they can to their patients without causing harm. Unfortunately, not all doctors are created equal, and other human factors contribute to any errors or negligence in a doctor’s practice of medicine. Thus, it is conceivable that medical malpractice may occur. After all, according to the study conducted by Johns Hopkins, this alarming phenomenon is determined to be the third-leading cause of death in the United States, just right after heart disease and cancer. Thus, it is vital to be aware of the common medical practice claims to be on the lookout for any potential medical malpractice occurrence in your case. If you’re looking to file a medical malpractice lawsuit or are looking for lawyers for medical practice, it’s important to understand your situation. The most common types of medical malpractice claims in the United States include, but are not limited, to the following.
Failure or Delayed to Diagnose or Misdiagnosed a Patient’s Condition
Medical malpractice occurs when the doctor either has failed to determine the patient’s medical issue or has reached a wrong diagnosis of the patient’s condition. This can happen either after the doctor has examined the patient or has been aware of the patient’s symptoms and concerns. This type of medical malpractice is prevalent, and although most cause very minimal results, some can be very serious and even lead to long-lasting injuries or death.
Wrong Treatment or Failure to Treat a Patient’s Condition
Another form of medical malpractice occurs when the doctor has prescribed the wrong medication or treatment or even failed to provide treatment for the patient. The doctor’s failure has then caused the patient to continue to suffer in pain due to their condition or symptoms, or the doctor’s malpractice has led to other complications or serious injuries.
Failure to Warn the Patient of the Known Risks of a Medication or Procedure
This medical practice occurs when the doctor has conducted a procedure or prescribed medication to the patient without fully disclosing or discussing the potential risks and harm such treatment may cause. These risks do not have to have a high potential of occurring to be actionable. As long as there is a possibility of risk, then the doctor must warn the patient of any complications that a specific procedure or medication can pose.
This form of medical malpractice could occur when the surgeon either has performed the wrong or unnecessary procedure, damaging other parts of the body during the process, inadequate care after the procedure, use of non-sterile surgical instruments, or inadvertently leaving tools inside the patient’s body, or administering the incorrect amount of anesthesia for the procedure.
This error poses a significant effect on a patient’s quality of life. Even if the patient has signed a consent form acknowledging the risks of complications or even death due to the procedure, the doctor is not legally allowed to commit negligence, which is the case for most surgical errors.
Birth injury is an unfortunate type of medical malpractice and can take form in various ways and is not limited to childbirth. A birth injury can occur even during prenatal care if the obstetrician fails to provide inadequate care to the mother and the unborn baby. More so, a birth injury that occurs in childbirth refers to any injuries or death that the mother or the baby suffers.
Generally, birth injuries suffered by a child incur lifelong medical conditions and care. Thus, these types of claims typically have a high cost of damages.
Medical Product Liability
In addition to doctors, a medical malpractice claim pertains to manufacturers or distributors of medical devices used on patients. This type of malpractice occurs when a medical device fails to function as expected that they end up injuring a patient.
As with product liability law, this form of medical malpractice renders the manufacturer or distributor liable for the patient’s injuries if the medical device’s defect was something the manufacturer or distributor knew or should have known.
Medical malpractice is a severe circumstance that is worth being aware of. Although putting your faith in a medical professional is understandable, it is essential to be conscious that medical malpractice is common. However, medical malpractice is actionable and should be sought by the patient within the context of the law.
Final Remarks: The Most Common Types Of Medical Malpractice
Medical malpractice occurs when a physician makes an error in his or her practice that results in injury to the patient, whether or not there was any intention to cause harm. Medical malpractice can result from actions like misdiagnosis, failure to diagnose, prescribing the wrong medication, performing incorrect surgery, and failure to provide adequate treatment.