Common Signs of Medical Malpractice

medical malpractice

Each year, millions of Americans rely on and trust their medical professionals to offer optimal care for their health. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reports that approximately 83% of adults keep in contact with their health care professional each year. Although a patient’s well-being should be a medical professional’s number one priority, mistakes are made, such as delayed medical diagnoses, medication errors, or an overall lack of proper care, leaving many patients as a victim of medical malpractice.


Sadly, according to the Journal of American Medical Association, medical negligence is a top cause of death, behind heart disease and cancer and while medical malpractice doesn’t always result in death, it can be life changing. If you have experienced or currently experiencing the following, under your medical professional’s care, you may be a victim of medical malpractice:

Your Treatment Isn’t Working or Doesn’t Seem to Fit Your Diagnosis


When your doctor prescribes a treatment, such as a medication, for your medical condition, it may take awhile before you start to see results. However, if your condition continues to persist and even worsens during your treatment, there’s a good chance that your medical condition was misdiagnosed and additionally, if you feel as if your treatment doesn’t fit your diagnosis, your condition may have been misdiagnosed. While it’s likely that you don’t have the same training or medical knowledge as your doctor, you have the right to a second opinion, question your treatment, and know whether or not there are alternate treatment plans.

The Care You Receive is Subpar


A doctor’s office is, without a doubt, a busy place and there may be moments when the patients are backed up and the doctor and other medical staff seems to be in a rush. Unfortunately, many patients leave the doctor’s office feeling as though their medical concerns were an inconvenience and may not have had their questions answered or leave with more questions than they had going in. While the medical field will always be busy and fast paced by nature, no patient should ever feel as if he or she received less than the quality of care he or she deserves. As a patient, you have the right to receive as much information as you want or need about your condition, anything less and your doctor is not doing his or her job.

Major Mistakes Are Made


As the old saying goes, “to err is human,” however, major mistakes should be avoided at all costs in the medical field. A major medical error, such as operating on the wrong body part, administering the wrong dosage of anesthesia, or even leaving a surgical sponge in the body after a surgery, can be life-threatening and even result in more medical issues, as well as physical, mental, and emotional suffering. Victims of medical malpractice do not need suffer from a major medical mistake, however, these types of cases (i.e. surgical errors) make up a large number of medical malpractice claims.


The best way to avoid becoming a victim of medical malpractice is by being aware of the signs, taking control of your health, be your own advocate, and ask questions until you get the answers and information you need and deserve.

Medical Malpractice: Where Is It Common and What Can You Do to Avoid It?

medical malpractice

In the imperfect world we live in, mistakes are likely to be made at some point. Though everyone should know how to perform their jobs properly, humans are not perfect – even medical doctors. Medical errors can occur in any of kind of health care setting such as hospitals, nursing homes, clinics, or pharmacies. They can also involve things like medicines, equipment, surgery, or diagnosis.

With so many different branches, there is much room for error. What’s worse is that errors in the medical field can be fatal. Medical malpractice cases surface when a patient is harmed during their care from a doctor or nurse or if improper treatment is given. As a patient, you want to put trust in your doctor, but it’s also important that you do all you’re able to do in order to help prevent any kind of mistakes from being made. According to Delayed Medical Diagnoses, Catastrophic and Fatal Injury Attorneys, Powers & Santola, any delay in health care when it’s needed can worsen a medical condition or even lead to death. In what situations can medical malpractice often be found, and what can you – as a patient – do to avoid it?

Where Is It Often Seen?


In prescribing medication to patients, errors can occur in more ways than one. If there is a misdiagnosis, it’s possible that a doctor can prescribe a medicine that is completely different to what it is the patient actually needs. A doctor can simply prescribe the wrong medication altogether, or medications can get mixed up among patients in a hospital setting. Most commonly, a patient could get prescribed the wrong dosage – whether it’s too little or too much.


If a doctor is negligent during an operation, he or she could accidently puncture an organ, leave an instrument inside the body or even operate on the wrong area. Negligence can occur after an operation as well, which could lead to infection.


Failure to diagnose a medical condition of the mother or a disease that could be contagious to the mother’s fetus can happen when prenatal care is lacking. During childbirth, there can be failure to recognize potential complications due to the size of the baby or a tangle umbilical cord, or possibly a failure to recognize when a cesarean section may be needed.


Mistakes made by anesthesiologists can be even more life threatening than a surgical error. The improper amount of anesthesia can lead to permanent brain damage or even death. This can result from lack of research into a patient’s medical history or failure to check their vital signs before surgery.

What Are Some Tips to Prevent It?

Make sure your doctor knows which medicines you take.

Give your doctor all the information you can. If he or she is aware of what you’re already taking, they can better prescribe other necessary medications. This includes everything from vitamins to herbs.

Make sure your doctor knows about your allergies.

If you’ve had any kind of adverse reactions to medications, make sure you’re doctor is aware. In doing so, you help him or her avoid any medications that could harm you.

Ask about the medication your doctor prescribes.

Be sure that you can read what the prescription says. Ask both your doctor and your pharmacist about possible side effects. The more information you can get about the medicine – in terms you’ll understand – the better off you’ll be.

Come to an agreement with your doctor and surgeon.

It might sound obvious, but if you’re having surgery it’s so important to make sure you, your doctor and your surgeon all agree on what will be done.

Bring someone with you.

When you go to doctor’s appointments or into surgery, bring a family member or friend. Not only can this be comforting, but it will also provide a second set of ears. They may think of an important question that you might have forgotten or overlooked.