Last month, a Missouri jury awarded $6.4 million to a husband and wife from St. Louis County after the man suffered a massive stroke that could have been avoided had he received proper medical treatment. The 59-year-old man now needs life-long care as he suffers from restricted use of the right side of his body and is unable to work.
Over 15 years ago, the middle-aged man’s physician diagnosed him with a medical condition that kept his heart valve from closing properly. His doctor confirmed the diagnosis five year later but failed to refer the man to a heart specialist or conduct follow-up testing.
As the Missouri man’s condition worsened, his treating physician failed to order heart function tests, nor did he consult a cardiologist. Furthermore, the doctor declined a request to hospitalize the man. Shortly thereafter, the man suffered a debilitating stroke and he and his wife sued the doctor for medical malpractice.
Common Medical Mistakes
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) carefully track medical errors across the nation. Medical mistakes cause up to 100,000 deaths and millions of additional injuries each year. Prescription errors, alone, account for 1.25 million injuries each year in the U.S.
The most common mistakes made by medical professionals and health care facilities include the following:
- Failure to diagnose or misdiagnosis of medical conditions.
- Failure to order appropriate medical tests.
- Delay in administering proper treatment.
- Surgical mistakes.
- Inadequate follow-up or monitoring after medical procedures.
- Medication errors including administering an incorrect or dangerous drug.
Medical Malpractice Lawsuits
When a doctor or health care professional fails to provide adequate or appropriate medical care, a medical malpractice lawsuit may be necessary to keep him or her from making the same mistake again. Such lawsuits also allow those who suffer from medical mistakes or omissions to obtain reimbursement for their losses.
Although an injured individual, or the surviving family of one who died, can never be repaid for their loss, the following may be available:
- Reimbursement of medical expenses.
- Payment for continued care and treatment.
- Wage losses.
- Pain and suffering.
If you or a loved one suffers an injury due to a medical mistake, consult an experienced medical malpractice attorney. A lawyer knowledgeable about pursuing actions against medical professionals and health care facilities may be able to help you obtain compensation to which you and your family are entitled.