8 Common Medical Mistakes That Can Trigger a Malpractice Lawsuit

Medical errors are now the third-leading cause of death in the United States. Errors claim an estimated 251,000 lives every year. Medical errors also cause thousands of personal injuries every year as well. Some errors are more common than others, and these errors can lead to viable medical malpractice lawsuits.

  1.      Medication errors

Medications are administered to patients both in and outside of a healthcare facility. When those medications are wrongfully prescribed, they can have disastrous and even fatal results. Doctors could prescribe the wrong medication or an incorrect dose. Nurses could also administer the wrong medications to patients or even mix up medications among patients. Medication errors can also take place at the pharmaceutical level as well.

  1.      Misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis

Failing to diagnose a patient is one of the most common reasons for a medical malpractice lawsuit. Doctors must quickly assess your symptoms based on their limited knowledge of your condition and make treatment decisions. Unfortunately, these decisions are sometimes incorrect, causing detrimental results.

  1.      Childbirth-related injuries

Fetal injuries can be a cause for a medical malpractice lawsuit. The injury could have taken place during the birthing process or before the child is born (during the prenatal care stage). Failing to anticipate birth complications or incorrectly using forceps can seriously injure a baby and its mother during the birth process. Failing to identify risky pregnancies in the months prior to the birth can also threaten the lives of both the mother and the baby.

  1.      Anesthesia errors

Anesthesia plays a vital role in many health-related procedures. Even small errors that result in too much anesthesia can cause permanent injuries, including brain damage or death. Not having enough anesthesia can result in horror stories where patients are awake during surgery and unable to say anything, and similar circumstances.

  1.      Surgery errors

When most people think of medical malpractice lawsuits, they may automatically assume that the error was related to a surgery. These are relatively common as well, making up roughly 1/3 of all inpatient medical errors. The surgeon could make a small error that results in permanent damage in some sensitive or high-risk surgeries. Surgeons have also been known to operate on the wrong patient or body part, or even leave items inside of patients.

  1.      Communication errors

Nurses and doctors often work closely when dealing with patients. A simple communication error or failure to report a symptom can result in serious injuries for patients. Nurses and doctors often must work quickly, which presents a problem for effective communication regarding medical history, diagnosis information, or care that has been or should be provided.

  1.      Improper blood transfusions

Blood transfusions are one of the most common procedures that take place in American hospitals. However, according to one study, nearly 60 percent of those procedures are considered inappropriate or unnecessary. Providing this unnecessary care increases a patient’s likelihood of infection or contracting a disease.

  1.      Infection

Even though hospitals are supposed to be extremely clean, they are a breeding ground for bacteria and germs. Approximately 1 in 25 hospital patients develops an infection either in the hospital or after they go home. If the hospital staff was negligent in allowing what would have otherwise been a preventable infection to occur, you may have cause for a lawsuit.

Regardless of what kind of injury you have endured, if you suspect that it may have been because of the carelessness or inattention of a doctor or hospital staff, you may have a medical malpractice claim. Call the Law Office of Carla D. Aikens, P.C. to schedule a free consultation.

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Written by Carla D. Aikens

Carla D. Aikens

After years of working for large law firms on major corporate cases, Carla D. Aikens chose to go out on her own and found her own firm because she is passionate about helping people of whom others have taken advantage.