Common types of medical malpractice

It doesn't matter whether you're sick, healthy or somewhere in between, anyone who visits a doctor can become a victim of medical malpractice if the doctor makes obvious mistakes, overlooks important factors or recommends dangerous medical procedures while administering care. Make sure you understand the many ways that medical malpractice can occur so you and your loved ones don't become victims.

Here are a few of the most common types of medical malpractice:

  • Medication errors: A doctor could prescribe medication that conflicts with another medication the patient is currently taking. Alternatively, the doctor might prescribe or administer too much or too little medication, the wrong medication or a medication that the patient is allergic to.
  • Negligently administered anesthesia: Anesthesiologists fulfill a vital role to ensure that an anesthetized patient receives just the right amount of drugs to stay unconscious and healthy throughout a surgery. One false move on the part of the anesthesiologist and the patient could die or suffer catastrophic health complications.
  • Wrong-site surgical errors: Have you ever heard of a doctor operating on the wrong body part? These kinds of mistakes happen a lot more often than you might think.
  • Surgical complications: When surgeons enter the body to perform a procedure, a mistake could lead to catastrophic health consequences if a doctor disrupts a vulnerable organ, artery or hurts another part of the body.
  • Surgical souvenirs: Surgical souvenirs are foreign objects left behind by surgeons after performing a surgical procedure.
  • Misdiagnoses and delayed diagnoses: Improper analysis of a patient's symptoms could lead to the wrong diagnosis or a delayed diagnosis, resulting in an easy-to-treat disease condition turning into a potentially-fatal health calamity.

If you've been injured because your doctor made a mistake -- and even if you're just suspicious about whether your doctor may have committed malpractice -- don't give up on the issue. Keep asking questions and keep investigating what happened until you're certain you know what happened.

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