Surgery Error Attorneys in West Palm Beach, FL Helping Victims Win Justice in Palm Beach County and Throughout Florida
Surgical procedures come with a certain level of risk, but no one expects to be harmed due to the negligence of a surgeon or other healthcare expert. If that’s what happened to you, West Palm Beach surgical malpractice lawyers can help you sue those who caused an otherwise preventable injury.
We’ve all heard about the surgeon who amputated the wrong foot, but that kind of serious “never event” is rare. More common surgical errors include anesthesia mistakes, improper pre and post-operative care, unnecessary or inappropriate surgeries, and damage to surrounding tissue such as nerves and organs. Many errors also occur when the surgeon operates on the wrong body part.
In fact, one study shows that more than 4,000 surgical errors occur every year in the US. Many of these occur before or after the actual procedure, suggesting negligence or even carelessness. If you or a loved one has suffered unnecessary surgical injury, talk to our surgery error attorneys in West Palm Beach, FL
When Does a Surgical Error Amount to Medical Malpractice in Palm Beach Country and Throughout Florida?
Surgical procedures are subject to numerous risk factors, some of which are unpredictable and unpreventable. However, mistakes can occur as a result of negligence, in which case a surgical error can amount to medical malpractice.
Some of these preventable mistakes include the following:
- Poor communication between the surgical team
- Failure to conduct the necessary assessments and tests before surgery
- Taking shortcuts due to time pressure or understaffing
- Missing information such as scans, forcing surgeons to rely on memory
- Poor decision-making due to the surgeon’s ego and failure to listen
- Absence of or failure to follow standard procedures
- Incompetence due to insufficient training
- Fatigue or impairment due to the presence of drugs or alcohol
It’s shocking to learn that a patient lost a foot or kidney because the surgeon was too tired or wouldn’t listen to other people. However, it does happen, and that’s why the law allows the injured patient or next of kin to file surgery malpractice lawsuits.
Proving Negligence in a Surgical Malpractice Lawsuit
Surgical errors fall under the wider medical malpractice body of law. To prove that a surgical error was the result of negligence, you must show that the health provider’s actions failed to meet the expected standard of care.
This standard refers to the level of care that a reasonably qualified and skilled healthcare professional with the same training and background would provide in the same circumstances. The question to answer is, “would a similar doctor or nurse in similar circumstances have made the same mistake?”
If the answer is no, you probably have a surgical malpractice case. It’s important to consult surgery error attorneys in West Palm Beach, FL, who can help you file a strong lawsuit. Surgical malpractice cases can be hard to prove, especially if you lack the information needed to support your claim.
What to Do After Surgical Malpractice in Palm Beach County and Throughout Florida
Florida law requires mandatory pre-suit investigation to determine that the case is merited and an affidavit from a medical expert confirming that. The lawsuit should also contain proof that satisfies the main elements of medical malpractice cases, namely:
- Duty of care: the healthcare provider owed the patient duty of care as the result of a doctor-patient relationship
- Negligence: the healthcare provided in a way that breaches that duty of care
- Causation: the breach of duty caused the patient to suffer injury
- Damages: the patient suffered actual harm as a result, such as worsening of their condition, new injuries, or undue pain and suffering
Proving all these elements requires thorough investigation and supporting evidence, such as medical records, doctor’s notes, personal records such as diaries, and expert opinions from medical experts. The easiest way to file a surgical malpractice lawsuit in Florida is to consult West Palm Beach surgical malpractice lawyers to help you file and litigate your case.
What Damages Can You Pursue in a Surgical Malpractice Case?
Once you’ve established that you have a solid malpractice case, you can pursue different kinds of damages. These fall under three main categories:
- Economic damages: these are damages with a real and specific monetary value, such as medical expenses and lost income
- Non-economic damages: these are subjective damages with no specific monetary value, such as pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and loss of companionship after the death of a loved one
- Punitive damages: these may be awarded by a court and are meant to punish the defendant in cases of gross negligence
Florida law currently caps the amount of damages, although these laws are currently not enforced and were recently ruled by the Florida Supreme Court and the 4th District Court of Appeal to be in conflict with the Florida Constitution. The important thing is to work with experienced surgery error attorneys in West Palm Beach, FL, who will fight for you to the end.
Work With Expert Surgical Malpractice Lawyers in Palm Beach County and Throughout Florida
In addition to the special state requirements involved in West Palm Beach surgical malpractice lawsuits, proving such a case can be challenging and you should be prepared for a fight. Hospitals and healthcare providers generally have their own experienced lawyers to defend them against malpractice lawsuits, which are quite common.
Going up against such a formidable defense might be discouraging if you’re on your own, but not if you have your own team of highly experienced and decorated West Palm Beach surgical malpractice lawyers.
The team at Domnick, Cunningham & Yaffa has some of the best medical malpractice lawyers in Palm Beach County. If you think you have a surgical malpractice case, talk to us today and we’ll review it for free, no strings attached.