Running a small medical business can be a rewarding experience, but it also has its share of risks. With any type of medical business, whether you run a small dermatology office or a dental and orthodontist office, medical negligence may come up at one time or the other. By becoming familiar with the different types of medical negligence with your business, you can work to avoid these incidents and keep your patients safe.
Misdiagnosis or Failing to Diagnose. One of the more typical ways medical negligence occurs with a medical business is misdiagnosis. This happens more often than thought, and is commonly an honest mistake due to complicated symptoms. Misdiagnosis may result from not diagnosing a stroke, seeing symptoms of a heart attack, spotting signs of cancer, testing for diabetes, checking a mole for melanoma, or recognizing symptoms of more severe medical conditions like, pulmonary embolism, DVT, or meningitis for example. This also includes incidences where a doctor, nurse or physician doesn’t pay close enough attention to mild symptoms, which may actually be a sign of something more serious.
Surgery Issues. Complications during surgery aren’t necessarily a cause for medical negligence, because sometimes unexpected things happen in a surgery. However, there are some reasons, such as administering too much heparin or anesthesia, why a lawsuit might be brought up.
Foreign Object. One way it is considered negligence is if a foreign object is left in the patient’s body after surgery, and not noticed until later on. This could be a small surgical tool, gauze, medical wrapping or anything materials, all of which may cause shock, infection or sepsis.
Wrong Surgery Site. It is also possible for a surgeon to accidentally operate on the wrong body part or organ. This is rare, but has happened before. Examples include amputating the wrong appendage.
Perforation or Laceration. The surgeon may also perforate an artery or lacerate a nearby organ or blood vessel. This also happens occasionally, and can cause more serious complications during surgery.
Incorrect or Improper Treatment. Not treating a medical condition or dental condition properly is different from misdiagnose. This may occur when a recommended treatment is performed, that is unusual or not what another medical professional would. If the treatment causes more serious problems, it could lead to a malpractice suit.
Labor or Childbirth Issues. During labor or childbirth, there are also a number of things that could go wrong and be cause for medical negligence. This includes performing a cesarean when it isn’t necessary for a safe childbirth, not treating a more serious or difficult birth, or complications while inducing labor.
Anesthesia Problems. Finally, negligence may be involved when anesthesia is used. Anesthesia is already risky. However, there could be a problem with the wrong preparation or not monitoring the anesthesia through the surgical procedure.
While the information here isn’t medical advice and an individual should always seek professional medical assistant is injured or ill, medical negligence is a risk all medical-related businesses need to be aware of. To protect your business, be sure to get the right types of business insurance to cover medical malpractice lawsuits.