What happens if a doctor puts you on a prescription at a young age and it leads to cancer?

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What happens if a doctor puts you on a prescription at a young age and it leads to cancer?

Can they be sued for that?

Asked on September 4, 2014 under Malpractice Law, Indiana

Answers:

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

Answered 6 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). 

The applicable standard of care would be whether a reasonable medical practitioner in the communtiy would have presecribed the drug for your medical condition and what was the risk of developing cancer from using that drug?  Was it known at the time the drug was prescribed to you that it could cause cancer?

It would be advisable to have your medical records reviewed by another doctor.  If that doctor writes a report supporting your medical malpractice claim, that will strengthen your caae for medical malpractice.

Assuming that the second doctor writes a report supporting your medical malpractice claim, prior to filing a lawsuit for negligence against the first doctor, it may be possible to settle the case with the first doctor's malpractice insurance carrier.

Your claim filed with the first doctor's malpractice insurance carrier should include your medical bills, medical reports (especially the report from the second doctor) and if applicable, documentation of any wage loss.

Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will document your cancer diagnosis 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 first doctor's malpractice insurance carrier, NO lawsuit is filed.

If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the first doctor's malpractice insurance carrier, reject the settlement offers and file a lawsuit for negligence against the first doctor.

If the case is NOT settled, your lawsuit for negligence against the first doctor must be filed prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or you will lose your rights forever in the matter.


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