What to do about delyed medical treatment?

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What to do about delyed medical treatment?

I thought I may have broken a bone in my foot. (5th toe). I saw my doctor and he sent me for an X-ray. The X-ray was done and the results were sent back to him. I waited to hear from him but it never happened. I called his office and asked what was going on and his nurse told me that maybe I have arthritus. They will send me to a podiatrist. I waited, never herd from the podiatrist so I started calling him. No one ever answered. I called back my doctor and his nurse said I should call my insurance and complain. I did this and then asked if I could just see someone else. I got to see another podiatrist and it turns out my toe is broken. This took me 52 days to find out. Had another X-ray and the break is worse. Do I have a case?

Asked on May 8, 2013 under Malpractice Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Legally, you may have a case, since from what you write, there is reason to believe that the delay in providing you the results and diagnosing the broken toe may well be malpractice, or the provision of medical care which does not meet currently accepted standards for care.

Practically, the question is whether it is worth suing. You can only recover any additional medical costs caused by the delay (i.e. costs you  would not have had but for the delay); possibly some pain and suffering, but for a broken toe and an extra not-quite two  months of  pain, that's probably not much money at all; and for  lost wages, if any. Meanwhile, a medical malpractice claim can be very expensive, since you need medical experts to testify for you. It is likely that you would spend more money on the claim than you would receive.


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