Many misconceptions exist regarding the concept of medical malpractice. Thanks in large part to misinformation on television and social media, it’s often the case that a client of a personal injury lawyer is unsure how to approach their situation. Before trying to contact a personal injury lawyer regarding surgical or medical complications, it is important to know what constitutes a valid medical malpractice claim.

Defining Malpractice

Medical malpractice is not as broad an idea as one might think. Special standards exist for medical professionals to follow that allow for reasonable risks associated with medical procedures. These risks are included in the informed consent paperwork one must fill out and sign before surgeries or other treatment, and the liability of the injury is transferred to the patient in cases where a known associated legal risk was the cause.

It is important to note that an injury itself must also be legally proven. While the term “injury” commonly applies to physical, emotional or mental damages, it can include many other forms of damage, including financial and even reputational. This means that a medical malpractice claim must satisfy two requirements: the medical procedure must not follow standard guidelines, and a personal injury must be demonstrated in a court of law.

Common Causes and Errors

Even the best surgeon in the world is only human, and humans make mistakes. Unfortunately, working in such an impactful field means that everyday problems such as lack of training, tiredness, and neglect can have devastating impacts. It may be shocking, but a common type of malpractice lawsuit comes from surgeons operating on the wrong body parts or even the wrong patient entirely.

Whether a surgeon leaves a sponge in your abdomen or too little anesthetic was used, a personal injury lawyer can usually help you determine if a medical professional is liable for damages. Typically, unforeseen medical accidents occur due to negligence. It’s uncomfortably true that some surgeons have performed while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and this is most assuredly not a risk included in the informed consent paperwork. Other such human errors, like lack of communication, cutting corners during a procedure and poor planning, often result in malpractice claims.

It’s a good rule of thumb to consider malpractice as being, above all, preventable. Risks are usually acceptable if it is understood that even the best situation may result in some type of harm. However, negligence and incompetence are completely avoidable causes of injury and death and make a heavy case for malpractice lawsuits.

Find Experienced Help

If you are a victim of medical malpractice, you need legal help you can depend on. Mitch Grissim & Associates work every day to help Nashville area clients receive the compensation they deserve. With over three decades of experience in injury and accident law, Mitch Grissim & Associates can provide you with the experienced personal injury lawyer you need. For questions or more information, call 615-645-2634.