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Medical Malpractice

MisdiagnosesMedical Malpractice

Medical malpractice can occur with a misdiagnosis by a physician or other medical provider. If the provider fails to observe symptoms that are clear and this leads to a faulty diagnosis, the physician can be held liable if damage or death results. A physician is expected to use a differential diagnosis and rule certain more serious possibilities out before ignoring them. Sometimes the physician focuses on only one issue to the exclusion of other serious possible scenarios to the detriment of the client. Of course, the misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose must also lead to injury causally related to the negligence; otherwise making such a claim is likely to fail.

Failure to Diagnose

In addition to misdiagnosis, another very significant area where medical malpractice can occur is the failure to diagnose a medical condition. Clealry, by failing to diagnose a medical condition, the result can be devastating. This situation can have devastating consequences. For example, failing to diagnose cancer may lead to the cancer growing and spreading. It could cause the cancer to become more aggressive. Similarly, failure to order certain tests or procedures may be malpractice if a reasonably competent physician would have done so under similar circumstances.


A surgeon is expected to have a certain degree of expertise in the area of medicine he or she attempts to perform surgery. If the surgeon fails to live up to the standard of care required of a reasonably competent surgeon in the community, he or she can be held liable for the damages caused. Operating on the wrong body part, causing damage to other organs not involved in the surgery during surgery, failing to account for the equipment, bandages, or other items used during surgery and leaving them inside the body of the patient are just some examples of medical malpractice during an operation.

Standard of Care

A medical provider is expected to use the standard of care that a reasonable competent provider under similar circumstances would use in the geographic area. This does not mean the provider must be perfect. However he or she must be reasonably competent and treat the patient in a reasonably competent manner. The standard of care is one of the biggest issues in a medical malpractice claim. The insurance industry has a stable of physicians they can call as defense experts under any circumstances. One might be surprised just how far these physicians are willing to go to protect a fellow physician. As a result, it is important for the client to have access to excellent expert witnesses as well. Attorneys who regularly are involved in the medical area of the law are usually well equipped to locate extremely competent physicians to review a case and give an honest opinion about whether medical malpractice has occurred. The cases are very expensive to bring to trial so it does no good to get any opinion that cannot sustain against cross examination by defense counsel.

Pharmaceutical Error

Unfortunately, either wrongfully prescribing medication or wrongfully dispensing medication is also an area of medical malpractice that requires an attorney who is knowledgeable about medicine, prescription medication and the contraindications of prescription medicine. A wrong prescription can have catastrophic results with permanent injury. Indeed, such negligence can not only prevent recovery from another malady but can also cause additional medical problems as well.

Unfortunately, some of the employees in the prescription medicine field have very little knowledge of all aspects of medicine. They may misread the doctor’s prescription and not have any idea what their misreading of the prescription may cause. There is significant literature, and even websites and apps that assist the drug store employees in seeing the complications caused by certain prescription medication. In the event you need an experienced medical malpractice attorney on your side in a medical malpractice or pharmaceutical negligence case, call one of our medical malpractice attorneys today.

Maryland Personal Injury Blog - Medical Malpractice
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