A surgical procedure is an important method of treating many life-threatening conditions. While expensive, surgeries can help patients recover from injuries sustained during an accident, fix physical defects and other issues, and help improve a patient’s overall well-being.
However, not all surgical operations lead to the intended outcomes. Some may even cause long-term injuries and trauma to patients who have gone through them. Medical malpractice during surgery can do more than cost you a lot of money. It can also result in permanent disability. In that case, you may have to know what to do next once you have been a victim of malpractice. No matter the type of surgery you have had, check out this guide:
- Understand what counts as medical malpractice
Before considering legal action, you must first have a good idea of what medical malpractice involves. Doctors including surgeons are bound by an oath to ensure that patients get the care they deserve. Falling short of professional standards makes practitioners liable for negligence. Aside from this, the error should also result in injuries as well as long-term physical and economic damages that resulted from such injuries. Once you can establish these conditions, you will be in a better position to hold the surgeon as well as the institution liable.
- Demand answers from your surgeon
When surgery goes awry, the staff handling the procedure will most likely admit the error in a bid to lessen any criminal liability. This is only sometimes the case in many large hospitals and facilities with enough resources to mount an effective legal defense. You must talk with the medical professional leading the operation and get details. If your doctor acts ethically, they can be able to offer corrective measures. Still, it always helps to get a second opinion if your doctor seems to downplay the mistake they have made.
- Learn about the statute of limitations in your state
In legal terms, a statute of limitations sets the time limit over which you are allowed to file a certain type of lawsuit. The statute varies from state to state, so you will need to review your state’s policies on medical malpractice so you can identify your next move. Most states like Alabama and Florida allow for a two-year time limit that starts from the day you first noticed the injury from malpractice, but other states like Wisconsin and Nevada give victims three years to file.
- Get a personal injury attorney
If you think you have a solid case of medical malpractice, you must get a seasoned medical malpractice lawyer in the state where the incident happened. If you’re in Texas, for instance, look for a San Antonio personal injury lawyer to help you gather the evidence you need and file a claim that reflects the actual amount of pain and suffering you have gone through. Your lawyer can also help you launch a lawsuit if the surgeon or medical institution handling the procedure refuses to give in.
Surgeons go through extensive training to be able to handle even the most complicated procedures. Any mistake that results in injuries or disability could stem from negligence, so you will need to know what to do after that.