First realize that if your surgeon operated on the wrong part of your body you are not alone. These accidents happen more frequently than any medical professional would like to admit. You should also understand that many resources offering emotional support are available.
As experienced medical malpractice attorneys working in the Hudson Valley region, we have successfully litigated many different claims founded in medical negligence. In fact, when a surgeon performs surgery on the wrong location of the body, an act of medical negligence has occurred. Shrugging off the accident is something that you should never feel pressured into, nor should you take a doctor’s word that such accidents are normal.
It is important that you obtain the names of all staff involved in the surgery, which is gotten by obtaining medical records. Explain what happened to your experienced attorney and give all documentation to that attorney.
Amputating the wrong leg, or operating on the wrong side of the body, and even removing the wrong organ, are examples of wrong site surgery. Medical protocols and regulations are in place to prevent these mistakes. So when they happen it is almost negligence per se; also referred to Res Ipsa Loquitor. While these terms are different, they essentially lead to the same end. The end being that the happening of the act is negligence in and of itself.
This means that the plaintiff patient will not necessarily have to prove that the surgeon committed a negligent act. Negligence is assumed when the surgeon operates on the wrong part of the patient’s body.
Such does not mean that there is no trial or that the offending doctor will automatically have to pay damages. The injury itself has to be shown to a jury and the plaintiff will have to produce evidence of damages. Damages are what a jury will award to the patient. They represent the loss suffered by the patient.
Losses are often pain and suffering, medical expenses, rehabilitation expenses, lost earning potential, lost physical ability, etc. While some of these are easily quantified, such as ten week’s salary lost, others are not. Pain and suffering is harder to calculate. Such must be done and experienced medical malpractice attorneys know experts in the field of calculating these types of damages. Experts for the defense team will also use these experts to show that damages should be lower. So you should understand that determining proper damages is a highly contentious part of litigation.
Once the plaintiff and defense rest, the jury will deliberate and decide what the plaintiff should receive.
But what do you think? I would love to hear from you! Leave a comment or I also welcome your phone call on my toll-free cell at 1-866-889-6882 or you can drop me an e-mail at [email protected] You are always welcome to request my FREE book, The Seven Deadly Mistakes of Malpractice Victims, at the home page of my website at www.protectingpatientrights.com.