Medical malpractice happens every day in the United States. However, it can be difficult for patients to identify when they are the victims of substandard or negligent health care.
Physicians, surgeons, and medical facilities are not quick to point out or accept blame for medical mistakes. Yet medical mistakes may happen as frequently as 440,000 times per year.
If you suspect you were the victim of medical malpractice, read the following information about common medical malpractice claims. Then, contact an experienced Dallas medical malpractice attorney at Mathias Raphael PLLC Accident & Injury Lawyers to schedule a consultation.
What is Medical Malpractice in Texas?
Medical malpractice in Texas is defined as treatment, lack of treatment, or other claimed departure from accepted standards of medical care that results in injury or death to the patient. Medical malpractice can occur in any healthcare setting including but not limited to a:
- Doctor’s office;
- Surgery center;
- Dental office; and
- Nursing facility.
Any medical professional can commit medical malpractice.
The Five Most Common Medical Malpractice Claims
Some types of medical malpractice are more common than others and result in a larger number of claims against practitioners.
These are the following:
- Misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis;
- Failure to treat or improper treatment;
- Prescription drug errors;
- Surgical errors; and
- Birth injuries.
Any type of medical malpractice can prove life-changing or deadly to a patient.
Misdiagnosis or Delayed Diagnosis
Misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis is the most frequent type of medical malpractice. Misdiagnosis is when a medical provider treats a patient for a condition they have while neglecting to treat their actual illness.
In a delayed diagnosis, a medical provider correctly identifies and treats a patient’s illness but not right away. In an illness like cancer, this can allow the disease to progress to an untreatable stage.
Failure to Treat or Improper Treatment
A physician who fails to treat their patient may:
- Release their patient from care too soon;
- Fail to provide follow-up care; or
- Neglect to order the appropriate medical tests for their patient’s illness.
This is separate from improperly treating a patient’s condition. Improper treatment involves a correct diagnosis but failure to follow up with the proper medical care and disease management.
Both failure to treat and improper treatment cause a delay in care. This may lead to the worsening of a medical condition, complications, and even patient death.
Prescription Drug Errors
Prescription drug errors can happen anywhere a drug is prescribed, filled, or administered to a patient including the pharmacy. Common prescription errors include:
- A physician prescribing the wrong drug for a condition;
- A pharmacist misreading a prescription and providing the wrong dose of a medication; and
- A physician or pharmacist fails to recognize a dangerous drug interaction or allergy.
Patients can help to avoid known risks by alerting doctors and pharmacists of their drug allergies.
Surgery, even elective surgery, always involves risk. Communication between doctors, surgical teams, and patients is key to avoiding deadly surgical errors.
Some common surgical errors are:
- Operating on the wrong body part;
- Performing the wrong operation on the wrong patient;
- Foreign objects left inside the body during surgery;
- Infections; and
- Mistakes when administering anesthesia.
Patients should verify the type and location of their surgery with their surgical team during the pre-operating brief.
Birth injuries can happen at any time during a woman’s pregnancy, labor, or the birth of the baby. Birth injuries may impact the woman’s health, the baby’s health, or both.
Many birth injuries that affect the baby are a result of a lack of blood or oxygen to the baby’s brain. Birth injuries include but are not limited to the following:
- Cerebral Palsy;
- Perinatal asphyxia;
- Spinal cord injuries;
- Bone fractures;
- Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy;
- Brachial plexus injury;
- Capital succedaneum; and
- Intracranial hemorrhage.
Birth injuries may result from inadequate prenatal care, use of inappropriate force during the birthing process, or a delay in emergency c-section.
Contact an Experienced Dallas Medical Malpractice Today
If you would like more information on medical malpractice in Texas, contact an experienced attorney at Mathias Raphael PLLC Accident & Injury Lawyers today. Mathias Raphael PLLC Accident & Injury Lawyers is a success-driven Dallas personal injury firm ready to pursue justice for you.
Do not wait to contact Mathias Raphael PLLC Accident & Injury Lawyers. Texas has strict deadlines for filing medical malpractice claims.
There is never a charge to consult with a medical malpractice attorney at Mathias Raphael PLLC Accident & Injury Lawyers so call us in Dallas at (214) 307-8387 today!