When we seek medical care, we expect to receive professional service that addresses our condition. Sadly, however, this does not always happen, and patients can suffer as a result.
Mistakes happen in every field of medicine. However, the consequences of such mistakes may be more serious in some fields than others. Below, we discuss common mistakes that occur in three different areas of medicine.
What Is Medical Malpractice?
Medical malpractice is a healthcare worker’s deviation from the accepted standard of care. This deviation often results in harm to the patient.
Some people may not understand that a healthcare worker’s direct action is not the only way for medical malpractice to occur. It can also occur due to a healthcare worker’s lack of action, such as failing to diagnose a medical condition or failing to treat a patient in time.
In short, medical malpractice occurs when a healthcare worker neglects to follow and offer proper standard care that is by duty owed to a patient. As a result of the healthcare worker’s substandard care, harm is caused to the patient.
Common Mistakes in Different Areas of Medicine
Medical malpractice happens everywhere -- from boutique cosmetic clinics to urgent care facilities and large hospitals. Although medical malpractice occurs in all areas of medicine, it can have a greater negative impact on a patient if it occurs in specialized areas, such as the following:
Obstetrics is the branch of medicine concerned with childbirth and the care of women giving birth. Healthcare workers in this field are often referred to as “OB-GYNs,” or obstetrician-gynecologists.
Mistakes in this field of medicine can have serious consequences for women and children, both born and unborn. During pregnancy, labor, and delivery, women and babies must be provided with an acceptable standard of care. This involves:
- Diagnosing any prenatal conditions the mother may have, such as gestational diabetes, and infections, and treating the condition accordingly
- Monitoring the infant during the labor and delivery process and responding to emergency events appropriately
- Using care when delivering the infant and only using birth assistance tools like forceps and vacuums properly and as needed
Unfortunately, however, OB-GYNs and other healthcare workers in this field deviate from the standard of care quite often, with approximately 28,000 babies in the United States suffering from a birth injury every year. Such birth injuries can result in permanent conditions like cerebral palsy, hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE), and more. Additionally, women may suffer physical or psychological injuries after undergoing a traumatic birth.
Cardiology is the study and treatment of disorders of the heart and the blood vessels. It is considered one of the most difficult fields of medicine, with aspiring cardiologists required to undergo more years of schooling than many of their counterparts in other fields. However, this does not prevent them from making mistakes.
Common mistakes in cardiology include:
- Recommending the wrong surgery or making a mistake during a surgery
- Diagnosing a patient with the wrong heart condition or failing to diagnose their condition
- Failing to prescribe the correct medication for a heart condition
Since cardiology involves the heart and blood vessels, mistakes can be catastrophic for patients and their families.
Orthopedics is the branch of medicine dealing with the correction of deformities of bones or muscles. This is a very specialized field that requires healthcare workers to have an in-depth knowledge of the musculoskeletal system and how to treat conditions associated with it. Additionally, mistakes made by healthcare workers in this field can have lifelong consequences for patients. Common mistakes in orthopedics include:
- Setting bones or installing casts incorrectly
- Amputating the wrong body part
- Misreading X-rays, CT scans, or MRIs
Such mistakes may result in unnecessary amputations, damaged nerves, or even death.
Suffered from Medical Malpractice? Contact Us Today
Medical malpractice can change a patient’s life forever, or even end it prematurely. If you or someone you love has been harmed by medical malpractice, Grossman Roth Yaffa Cohen is here to help. Our Miami medical malpractice attorneys have vast experience in this area of the law, and we have helped our patients move forward after suffering from this injustice. Learn how we can help you, too.
Call Grossman Roth Yaffa Cohen at (866) 629-1061 to schedule a free consultation.