Surgery Complications and When to Call an Attorney

We all hope surgeries go according to plan. But what happens when they don’t? Medical errors are among the leading cause of death in the United States (Johns Hopkins), and many of them are preventable. If you or a loved one has been the victim of negligence during a hospital stay, you may have felt helpless to do anything about the situation. But you can take legal action. The first step is knowing when to seek help.

Common Complications

There’s little room for error in surgery, and the same holds true for recovery care. Here are some common issues and the impact they can have.

  • Anesthesia Errors – Nobody wants to open their eyes during surgery. Anesthesia errors happen when the dose is too low, resulting in a mid-procedure awakening, or too high, which could deplete a patient’s oxygen and potentially cause brain damage.
  • Negligent Care – Recovery from surgery takes time and careful attention. At our most vulnerable, we rely on medical professionals to administer drugs and monitor our condition. Carelessness has no place in medicine.
  • Defective Implants – What if a pacemaker doesn’t work? A defective implant is nothing more than a foreign body in your body.

Malpractice spans a broad range of medical problems. However, not every complication demands a lawsuit. It’s important to assess the situation.

The Big Three

Knowing when to call an attorney makes all the difference in a medical lawsuit. The statute of limitations for medical cases is 1-2 years in most states. In other words, time is money. If you are on the receiving end of a bad procedure, ask yourself these three questions:

  • Did you receive improper care? If your doctor, nurse, or other medical professional made an error that could have been avoided through proper care, your case may be viable. Neglect is the deciding factor
  • Were you injured, or was someone you love killed? Compare your experience to the normal scope of recovery pain. Is there a difference? Your procedure should not have caused unpredictable physical or emotional damage.
  • Were there consequences for your everyday life? Surgery complications have a real impact—short- or long-term—that may cause you to miss work or other obligations.

Together, these questions determine the validity of a medical case. If you can answer yes to all three, it’s time to seek legal help.

It can be hard to fight for yourself or your loved one in the midst of medical complications. Let Smolen fight for you. We want to help you reclaim your life after medical complications. Call for a free consultation today.

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