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Indianapolis Medical Malpractice Law Blog

Anesthesia administration and anesthesia errors

Anesthesia has become a common part of the healthcare industry. It is used to numb the body and relieve sensations that may give way to pain. The administration of anesthesia is very controlled in hopes that a patient receives no more than is necessary to achieve the desired effect.

These drugs can be administered in one of three ways. The first is called local anesthetic. Here, a patient remains conscious during a procedure, and anesthetic is typically injected to numb the area where the procedure is to occur.

How is prostate cancer diagnosed?

There are a number of deadly medical conditions out there. Cancer is perhaps the scariest amongst them. Fortunately, many forms of cancer can be effectively treated if caught early enough. This, however, requires quick and accurate diagnoses, which is why it is important that doctors live up to the duty of care they owe to their patients. A failure to diagnose can lead to a worsened medical condition, a decreased chance of survival, and even death.One treatable type of cancer is prostate cancer. There are many ways that an individual can be screened for and diagnosed with prostate cancer. As far as screening goes, a doctor can conduct a physical exam or a blood test. These screening techniques are used to identify abnormalities that can then be tested for cancer.There are also a number of tests to determine whether or not an abnormality is cancerous. Ultrasounds, for example, can allow a doctor to obtain a full image of an abnormality within the body to better determine its cause. A biopsy allows a doctor to remove and actually test the tissue to determine if it is cancerous. If prostate cancer is detected, then additional testing can be conducted to determine how aggressive it is within the patient.If caught in its early stages, prostate cancer can sometimes be effectively treated an even beaten. However, far too often medical professionals fail to make accurate and timely diagnoses. Sometimes they even order the correct test to diagnose a medical condition but then fail to accurately read those test results. Regardless of how it occurs, medical malpractice is unacceptable. Those who have been harmed by hospital or doctor negligence should consider taking legal action to impose liability and recover compensation for the damages that have been unfairly imposed upon them.

Medical apologies: Patient and physician perspectives

When you seek medical treatment at an Indiana doctor's office, hospital or outpatient facility, you have the right to reasonably expect that those to whom you have entrusted your health will act according to accepted safety standards and state regulations that govern medical care. You understand that doctors are human beings who are capable of error. However, wouldn't you expect a doctor who makes an error regarding your health to at least apologize for his or her mistake?  

Many Indiana medical patients who suffered injury because of medical negligence have filed lawsuits against those deemed liable. A majority of them say their primary motivation was to try to make sure that such incidents did not happen again to other medical patients. Many doctors say they are hesitant to admit their mistakes, much less to apologize, because they think it might adversely affect their careers.  

Lack of informed consent may constitute medical malpractice

Undergoing a medical procedure can be stressful and, for some people, terrifying.

Fortunately, patients should know exactly what they are getting into before they agree to any sort of medical treatment. This means that a doctor must ordinarily have a detailed communication with a patient before providing medical care. Failing to do so could result in legal liability because it could leave a patient with serious and unexpected injuries.The law actually requires doctors to obtain informed consent before proceeding with a medical operation. There are many aspects to informed consent. To start, a doctor must have a full discussion with the patient about his or her diagnosis. Subsequently, a doctor must discuss the treatment options available to the patient as well as the risks that are associated with each course of treatment. These treatment options must be comprehensive, meaning that a doctor cannot forgo discussing a treatment option simply because it is expensive or unpopular. Once this information is discussed with the patient, the patient must sign off approving the discussed course of treatment.If a doctor fails to obtain informed consent for an operation, or the doctor conducts a procedure that goes beyond the scope of the informed consent, then a medical malpractice lawsuit may be justified. If successful on one of these claims, damages may be recoverable. Compensation may be obtained for losses such as medical expenses, disfigurement and lost wages.Medical malpractice claims are extremely challenging to win, though. This is why victims of hospital negligence need to ensure that they have the best evidence available to them before proceeding on a claim. This includes documentary and testimonial evidence, as well as careful consideration of how one's own actions may have played into the harms caused. To conduct the careful analysis of the facts in light of applicable law, a medical malpractice victim may want to discuss their case with a skilled legal professional.

Can prescription medications cause birth injuries?

Modern medicine is an amazing thing, and these days there are countless prescription medications that can be applied to all sorts of maladies. When a woman is pregnant, it is important that anything she consumes is safe for her and her developing baby. This is true not just for food and drinks, but also for medications. If a mother in Indianapolis takes a valid, legally prescribed drug while pregnant, and the drug harms her developing baby, the mother may want to pursue a lawsuit for birth injuries (med mal).

In order to prevail on such a claim, certain elements must be proven. First, it must be shown that the woman used the medication while pregnant. Second, the mother must have obtained and used the medication via a valid prescription from a health care provider. Third, it must be shown that the birth injury would generally not be present due to other factors, such as disease or heredity. Fourth, it must be known that the medication at issue could cause birth defects. Finally, it must be shown that the medication at issue did cause the birth injury.

Burnout can lead to instances of medical malpractice, study says

Employee burnout -- the grinding, continuous stress, cynicism and exhaustion that one might experience in their job -- is not limited to any one industry. However, when medical professionals in Indiana and nationwide experience burnout at work, it affects more than just them and their employer. It can also affect the safety of patients in their care.

One study out of Stanford University exemplifies just how significant burnout is in the medical industry, and how it can lead to acts of medical malpractice. The study surveyed around 7,000 doctors across the nation. A startling 55 percent of respondents reported experiencing burnout, and 10 percent of those reported that they committed at least one significant medical mistake over the past three months. In fact, the results revealed that burnout was a factor in the tripling of medical mistakes made.

Mental health concerns for ICU patients

What happens during a hospital stay cannot only have impacts on a person’s physical health, it can also have implications related to mental health. Take, for instance, the mental health concerns that arise in connection to care at intensive care units. ICU patients can face risks of delirium, a state of confusion.

Delirium can lead to ICU patients facing lingering mental problems. Some patients never experience a full recovery from such problems.

Surgery is not supposed to make things worse

When you entrust your health to a licensed Indiana surgeon, you have the right to reasonably expect that he or she and all other care providers who are tending to your needs will act according to the highest level of accepted safety standards. In short, while there may be risks associated with a particular surgical procedure, you should have reason to hope that such care is going to help your health improve.  

Sadly, many fatalities occur in hospital settings, including those caused by surgical negligence. As you prepare for surgery, you can expect your surgeon to discuss the procedure, including informing you of all known risks involved. If you suffer a post-operative condition that is common but that no one told you was a possibility, you may have grounds to file a medical malpractice lawsuit. You can be proactive by researching common surgical errors ahead of time and by knowing how to protect your rights

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