Medical Malpractice Lawyer in Charleston, SC
When we go to the doctor, we trust that they will have our best interests at heart. Like anyone else, doctors are human and can make mistakes, but unfortunately for victims of medical malpractice, a doctor’s mistake can be severe or even deadly.
If you were misdiagnosed with a condition, had an improper medical procedure performed on you, or have a disease that went undiagnosed until it progressed, you may have a claim for medical malpractice damages.
Medical malpractice or misdiagnosis victims often experience life-changing consequences or have ongoing health concerns. If you or a loved one have been harmed by the actions of a health care professional, a Charleston medical malpractice lawyer can help.
Contact The Joel Bieber Firm today for a complimentary consultation about your case.
Charleston, SC, Medical Misdiagnosis and Malpractice: An Overview
A medical misdiagnosis can have several implications on your long-term health and potential for recovery. For example, if your doctor doesn’t properly diagnose a disease, you could miss out on early treatment that can give you a better chance for a full recovery.
Or, you may be diagnosed with the wrong condition and have to undergo invasive medical treatments you don’t need. The emotional trauma and mental stress of medical misdiagnosis also take a toll on victims.
Both the medical professional responsible for the misdiagnosis and the health care center you were being seen at may be responsible for your misdiagnosis and guilty of malpractice. Medical misdiagnosis can happen when the physician:
- Didn’t order the tests needed to rule out certain causes of your symptoms
- Failed to take action on test results, or delayed in acting on the results
- Did not listen to you when you were describing your symptoms
- Failed to consider how your underlying medical condition could be affecting a possible diagnosis
- Didn’t fully explain the side effects of your prescribed medication
Medical misdiagnosis can also happen when you have complications from an implanted medical device.
These are some of the most common instances of medical misdiagnosis that could be considered malpractice, but they aren’t the only ones. If you didn’t receive the right treatment from a medical professional, a Charleston medical malpractice lawyer can evaluate your situation and determine whether you have a strong case.
They will consider your medical records and how the misdiagnosis or unnecessary medical procedure affected your health, your ability to work or care for your family, and the emotional toll it took on you.
Medical Malpractice Includes Misdiagnosis
The legal definition of medical malpractice includes medical misdiagnosis. Malpractice occurs when a doctor or health care provider doesn’t diagnose your condition or improperly diagnoses one.
The standard to determine malpractice is whether another qualified health care professional, in circumstances similar to yours, would have made different choices or arrived at a different diagnosis. This can include ordering more tests or asking follow-up questions to rule out certain diseases.
Medical misdiagnosis that actively harms the patient is considered malpractice. Or, if the treating physician doesn’t fulfill the standard duty of care required by any health care provider, that will be considered malpractice, too.
Filing a malpractice lawsuit, guided by a Charleston medical malpractice lawyer, can cover the costs of the treatment you received as well as those necessary to help you recover from the misdiagnosis or medical error.
Your losses also include the emotional trauma and physical pain and suffering you’ve experienced due to the malpractice.
How Your Charleston Medical Malpractice Lawyer Supports Your Case
Proving that a medical error or misdiagnosis is malpractice can be tricky. Your Charleston medical malpractice lawyer will need to demonstrate to a judge that other doctors faced with your presenting condition and symptoms would have acted differently.
This includes having your medical records reviewed by an expert and possibly more medical exams to get a second opinion on your condition. Your lawyer will also call expert witnesses, doctors, or health care professionals who can testify that they would have treated you differently.
There are four elements of proof for a medical malpractice case in South Carolina:
First, your lawyer must establish that the treating physician owes you a duty of care. Once you arrive at a hospital or doctor’s office and a doctor begins treatment, they assume the duty to perform treatment that trained medical professionals would reasonably be expected to provide, given similar circumstances.
The next step is evaluating whether the actions (or inaction) of the doctor who treated you met the standard duty of patient care.
This is why testimony from expert witnesses is so vital to your case, and part of the reason you should choose a personal injury lawyer focused on medical malpractice cases — they understand what kinds of witnesses are necessary to prove your case.
This testimony establishes malpractice, but in order to successfully claim damages against the physician or health care center, your lawyer must connect your current condition to the misdiagnosis or other malpractice — they have to prove that the misdiagnosis caused your health woes.
Once your lawyer connects your physical condition and emotional trauma to the malpractice, they then have to prove that you suffered serious harm to your person because of it.
This can be a disease that progresses further than it should have without proper intervention and the stress and strain living with the undiagnosed illness causes you.
Sometimes, the medical center where you received treatment may share in some of the responsibility for your malpractice injuries. If they consistently failed to staff enough doctors, for example, and you received substandard care due to short-staffing, your lawyer may name the medical center as a defendant.
Or, if they kept your doctor employed despite receiving multiple patient complaints, then the medical center could be liable for not having qualified medical providers available.
Working with a Charleston, SC, Medical Malpractice Attorney
Have you or someone you love been a victim of medical malpractice or misdiagnosis by a Charleston doctor or health care center? You aren’t alone — The Joel Bieber Firm can help you file a lawsuit for damages and get the financial justice you deserve. Contact us today for a free, confidential consultation about your case.