No matter what illness or injury we may face, we count on physicians and nurses to make us better. What happens, though, if instead of healing your ailment, the very individuals whom you trust to make you whole cause more harm than good? The aftermath of a medical professional’s errors can be devastating, and can cause unbearable pain that can last a lifetime.
Although financial compensation for medical injuries may never restore you to your former way of life, a personal injury lawyer can work with you to earn compensation to help offset the costs associated with your healthcare provider’s mistake, and ease the weight of the financial burden associated with your injury so that you can focus on healing to the fullest extent possible. The attorneys at Litster Frost are here to help you fight your medical malpractice case every step of the way.
Medical Malpractice in Idaho Falls
When a doctor, nurse, or other medical professional acts negligently in treating a disease, injury or illness and this negligence leads to greater illness or injury, medical malpractice has occurred.
Although Idaho is one of the top ten states with the fewest medical malpractice lawsuits, these suits do indeed occur, with nearly 15 lawsuits being brought for every 100,000 Idahoans. Take for example the local case of Roland Smith, who entered an Idaho Falls hospital in August 2016 to have a softball-sized cancerous tumor removed from his left kidney. Instead, Smith and his attorneys say that the surgeon removed his healthy right kidney instead. The wrong kidney was removed despite the surgeon’s review of multiple medical records and imaging studies that clearly indicated the mass location on the right kidney. Not only did Smith undergo a major surgical procedure for no medical reason, but he was left with the large, life-threatening mass on what is now his only remaining kidney.
If you are the victim of negligence at the hands of a medical professional, then you are already well aware of the strain that medical malpractice can cause. Some cases of medical malpractice, as in the case of Roland Smith, are so severe that they leave individuals permanently disabled or can even lead to death.
With thousands of illnesses diseases present in the world today, it can sometimes be difficult for a physician to link your symptoms to a specific cause. Oftentimes, medication is prescribed in hopes of curing an illness that might not be diagnosed. While this is sometimes a good faith effort to treat a mystery illness, a wrongful prescription can also be due to a physician’s negligence. If you have been injured by a medication that a doctor or medical professional should not have prescribed, then you may have a cause of action for medical malpractice.
Failure to Diagnose
If you are suffering from a serious illness, then timing is critical to treatment for your illness. Even a slight delay in your diagnosis could lead to devastating effects and can be the difference between life and death. Failure to diagnose can occur when a doctor dismisses the symptoms that you say you are experiencing, or can sometimes occur when a medical professional diagnoses you with one illness or disease when you actually have another type of disease.
Failure to diagnose cancer is a particularly egregious mistake on the part of a healthcare professional, as cancer cells can become even more aggressive and spread to other parts of the body in the period which an individual is trying to find a prognosis. By the time certain cancers are finally caught, it may be too late for a cure.
Bringing a new child into the world should be a cause for celebration and joy. However, if your infant was injured at the hands of a negligent healthcare provider, the joy you should be feeling can very quickly be replaced with despair. Birth injuries can occur at any point from early pregnancy to delivery and post-delivery. Birth injuries can be as simple as bruising or as devastating as a brain bleeding or paralysis. Common causes of birth injuries are the misuse of forceps and vacuum extractors during the delivery process. While the use of forceps and vacuum extractors can be critical in the delivery process, each tool must be handled with extreme care. If either tool is misused, severe injuries can be inflicted upon your child. Injuries from misuse of forceps can include:
- Severe bruising to the head and face;
- Skull fractures from excessive forced caused by mishandling of birth tools;
- Facial nerve damage, which can be temporary or permanent;
- Bleeding in or around your child’s brain;
- Cerebral palsy, which can cause severe brain damage and loss of muscle control; and
- Shoulder dystopia, which is a complication in which a child’s shoulder becomes trapped in the birth canal, leading to severe nerve damage.
Each day, tens of thousands of people undergo routine operations. Sometimes, however, these operations can go wrong, and an error in a simple procedure can lead to a lifetime of pain or even death. If you find yourself the victim of a botched surgery, then a personal injury attorney can help you recover the compensation you deserve to help with medical expenses related to the complications you experienced.
Surgical errors which can lead to drastic complications include:
- Operating on the wrong body part (for example, operating on your left shoulder instead of your right);
- Leaving medical equipment such as tools and sponges inside of your body when closing the incision; and
- Using equipment which has not been sterilized, leading to severe infection.
Do I Need To Contact an Attorney to Bring a Claim on My Behalf?
If you are suffering from an injury due to the actions of a doctor or medical professional, it is critical to contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney before filing a claim. In Idaho, claims for medical malpractice must pass through a “prelitigation screening process” in order to move forward to a lawsuit. This process requires the completing of a large amount of complicated paperwork to be successful, and every step of the process must be completed correctly in order to move past the screening process. If even one small step is missing from your application, then the process will be delayed. Your attorney will make sure that all of the boxes are checked in this process, and will wade through the nuances of your case to determine whether you have a firm basis for a medical malpractice lawsuit.
Injured by a Physician or Medical Professional? Let us Help You Today!
If you have been injured while at an Idaho Falls medical facility such as a doctor’s office, Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center, or Mountain View Hospital and believe you deserve compensation for your injuries, you don’t have to fight your battle alone. The personal injury team at Litster Frost are here to advocate on your behalf so that you can focus all of your energy on what truly counts, healing. Don’t wait; to schedule a consultation to speak with an attorney about the specifics of your case, fill out an online case evaluation form or call (208) 333-3330 today.