What can I do about a doctor who performed unnecessary surgery?

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What can I do about a doctor who performed unnecessary surgery?

A few years ago I started having problems with my knee. I went to a surgeon who ordered an MRI. It showed medical and lateral meniscus tears. He recommended surgery, which I had done in december. After the surgery I was not recovering at all. To this day I am so much worse. I received and additional MRI that showed a large cyst had developed. This was pressing on a large nerve and was giving me a lot of pain, as well as my meniscus. I sought a second opinion from a very respected surgeon. He determined after reviewing my chart and scans that he wouldn’t have done that surgery on me. Recently my doctor said that the surgery was a mistake. Now I have all these problems from it. I can’t work and I’m in pain all the time.

Asked on May 12, 2015 under Malpractice Law, Washington


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

Answered 9 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 foreseeable harm).

Prior to filing a lawsuit for negligence against the surgeon, it may be possible to settle the case with the surgeon's insurance carrier.

Your claim filed with the surgeon's malpractice insurance carrier should include the medical bills, medical reports, and documentation of wage loss.  You should also include the statements from the second surgeon"that he wouldn't have done that surgery" and the statement from your doctor that "the surgery was a mistake" to strengthen your claim of malpractice.

Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will document the nature and extent of your 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 surgeon'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 surgeon.

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

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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