What is my legal recourse if I had a screw placed in my finger but I’ve since found out that from another doctor that my finger wasn’t broken?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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What is my legal recourse if I had a screw placed in my finger but I’ve since found out that from another doctor that my finger wasn’t broken?

After the surgery I had to go back in because the point of the screw was sticking out past my bone and reinjuring me if it touched anything and I got a severe infection. I went to the emergency department and they wanted to

amputate. I walked out. Thankfully. However, my bone continues to make more growth around where the point is of the screw and sometimes will swell

badly if bumped. Before I found out from another doctor after having an X-ray done that my finger wasn’t broken even, I was told at my doctor’s,

Asked on May 23, 2018 under Malpractice Law, Kansas


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

If there was no need for the screw (i.e. your finger was not broken), that would very likely have been malpractice, unless the signs and symptoms you displayed at the time would have convinced the average reasonable doctor that your finger was broken and you needed the screw. It could also be malpractice if you needed the screw, but they put it in wrong or used too long a screw, or did not remove it later when they should have. Based on what you write, you may well have a malpractice case and may be entitled to compensation for any additional medical costs you have incurred and for "pain and suffering" for the pain and life impairment you have experienced. It would worthwhile for you to consult with a medical malpractice attorney about possibly bringing a lawsuit and what your case might be worth. Many such lawyers provide a free initial consultation  to evaluate a case, and you can confirm this before making the appointment.
If you want to explore possibly suing, do so immediately: you write that this took place "years" ago, and there is a limit on how long you have to bring cases after you discover the problem or potential malpractice: don't let more time go by before you consult with an attorney. Good luck.

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