Do I have grounds for a valid lawsuit if my daughter’s doctor ignored signs of an internal infection after her surgery?

Daughter had rods put in her back. A few weeks later she presented signs of an Infection through bloodwork. The doctor blew it off and said that she was fine. There were never any signs of infection at the incision, which makes me feel like this all started internally from their procedure, or hardware that they installed. Over the course of 7-8 months she had to have multiple blood transfusions to stay alive, her kidneys have been permanently damaged, she developed a blood disease, and he never did anything to figure it out. Finally after many visits, he finally said it looks like theres an internal infection. They opened her back up again and found her whole back was filled with staph infection, and they scrubbed it all out.

Asked on March 2, 2015 under Malpractice Law, Florida

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Medical malpractice is negligence.  Negligence is the failure to exercise due care (that degree of care that a reasonable medical practitioner in the community would have exercised under the same or similar circumstances to prevent forseeable harm).

It would be advisable to have another doctor review your daughter's medical records and write a report supporting your malpractice claim.

Prior to filing a lawsuit against the first doctor, it may be possible to settle the case with the doctor's malpractice insurance carrier.  Your daughter's claim filed with the malpractice insurance carrier should include her medical bills, medical reports and if applicable documentation of any wage loss.

Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will document the nature and extent of her injury/condition and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering, which is an amount in addition to the medical bills.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.

If the case is settled with the doctor's malpractice insurance carrier, NO lawsuit is filed.

If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the malpractice insurance carrier, reject the settlement offers and file a lawsuit for negligence against the doctor.  If your daughter is a minor, you will need to be appointed guardian ad litem to file a lawsuit on her behalf because a minor cannot file a lawsuit herself.

If the case is NOT settled with the doctor's malpractice insurance carrier, your daughter's lawsuit for negligence against the doctor must be filed prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or your daughter will lose her rights in the matter forever.

 


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