Medical malpractice is relatively rare in terms of the overall number of procedures performed every year, but it is still very possible that it could happen to you. To prevent becoming a victim, know when to be suspicious of potential wrongdoing.
Medical malpractice can have serious repercussions for an individual, both because of the potential long-term effects and the fact that there is no one actively treating them.
Because medical malpractice is defined as negligent treatment or a lack of treatment by a doctor or other professional, it is something that can often go unnoticed or undiagnosed. This is largely due to the fact that the doctors who made the mistake either do not notice what has happened or are trying to hide it from being discovered. While this is happening, the injury or untreated condition is left to continuously get worse.
So how can this type of wrongdoing be uncovered, diagnosed and treated? Unfortunately in most cases, this only happens if the patient is able to determine that something is indeed wrong and then proceeds to seek out the truth in the form of a second opinion or further testing.
Due to the fact that being a potential victim of medical malpractice is something that must be discovered on one’s own, it is important to have a basic idea of some warning signs to look for that can signal potential trouble.
First and foremost, if the condition or injury you were treated for, or one that resulted from a surgery or treatment you recently had, does not subside with time or even gets worse, this should be a major red flag. Seeking a second opinion in a situation like this can not only provide you with peace of mind, it can also assess whether the approach that has been tried is correct and appropriate or whether another treatment is necessary or could become helpful.
Similarly, doctors are professionals and should treat you as such in all dealings with you. They should be able to understand and even anticipate when you may have concerns, ask certain questions or need to seek a second opinion, and they should be accepting of these things. Failure to act in this manner, or a failure to openly address and respond to any issues or questions you may have about your treatment could be a sign that something is wrong.
If doctors ask if you are amenable to trying a new or untested approach or choose to treat your condition with approaches you and your family or friends are not familiar with or doubt the validity of, it should also because for concern. All courses of action that are taken in any individual’s case should be spelled out ahead of time to the point that they make sense to the patient.
Medical malpractice is a difficult issue and these basic signs of potential danger does not always mean that there has been some sort of wrongdoing. Similarly, not every case of medical malpractice is defined by one of these signs. All instances are defined on a case-by-case basis and should be treated as such.