EXPERTS IN MISSOURI MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE CLAIMS
Medical Malpractice Attorneys in Kansas City, MO
We depend on doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals to diagnose and treat our injuries, illnesses, and diseases. When they make errors, the consequences devastate victims and their families. Medical malpractice victims not only have to deal with the physical pain associated with medical negligence but the trauma that comes with realizing someone we trust caused harm.
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries as a result of medical malpractice, Missouri law permits you to take legal action against the medical professional and/or facility that caused you harm. Seeking compensation for damages after medical malpractice will not turn back time, but it can provide money for treatment, living expenses, and more.
Contact our Kansas City medical malpractice lawyers or call us at (816) 251-1001 for a free consultation to discuss the details of your medical malpractice claim and learn about your legal options going forward.
Medical Negligence Lawyers Advocating for Malpractice Victims in Kansas City, MO
The Nail Law Firm has more than two decades of experience litigating high-stakes personal injury cases, including those involving medical malpractice. His commitment to learning about his clients and truly understanding the details of their case has led to the recovery of millions of dollars in damages. Some examples of recent malpractice case results include a $750,000 settlement for a client who suffered brain damage after an OxyContin overdose and a $1,000,000 jury award for a woman who suffered a severe stroke after her treating physician took her off blood thinners.
These case results are only examples and do not guarantee a specific outcome in your medical malpractice case. You can, however, feel confident in the fact that The Nail Law Firm has successfully helped families secure compensation and peace of mind following their medical malpractice claims. Our Kansas City medical malpractice lawyers will diligently pursue the best outcome possible for your individual circumstances.
Types of Medical Malpractice Cases
Medical malpractice occurs when a doctor, another medical professional, or a hospital causes injury to a patient through a negligent act or failure to act. Medical malpractice is different from ordinary negligence to the extent that the negligent act must be a result of diagnostic or treatment errors, or errors related to aftercare or facility management. The Kansas City medical malpractice attorneys at The Nail Law Firm can help you determine if you have a medical malpractice case. Below we cover more specific types of medical malpractice claims:
Fetuses and newborns can suffer injuries as a result of medical malpractice that occurs during pregnancy, labor, or delivery. Negligent medical professionals are often liable for birth injuries when pregnant mothers have followed all their doctors’ orders during pregnancy and leading up to childbirth. Acts and omissions that can lead to birth injuries include:
- Failure to provide the mother with adequate prenatal care
- Failure to order proper testing during pregnancy
- Failure to recognize and treat a distressed fetus
- Improper administration of epidural or other medication
- Failure to perform an emergency C-section
- Incorrect use of forceps, extraction vacuums, and other birthing tools
- Failure to monitor the health of the fetus during labor and delivery
- Cutting the umbilical cord too soon, which starves the fetus of needed nutrients
- Medication Errors
Patients might receive the wrong type or dosage of medication for a variety of reasons, all of which constitute medical malpractice. Examples include:
- Misdiagnosis of a condition or disease leading to the wrong prescription
- Wrong prescription as a result of a data entry error or failure to get a complete medical history
- Wrong dosage error
- Wrong fill or labeling by a pharmacist
Anesthesia errors are a type of medication error, but they deserve special treatment because the consequences of an anesthesia error can be deadly, and at the very least, lead to a great deal of pain. Fortunately, anesthesia errors do not occur that frequently. Research suggests that approximately 1 out of 200 surgical patients fall victim to an anesthesia error. Some specific errors related to the administration of anesthesia include:
- Wrong dosage or the wrong type of anesthesia
- Anesthesiologist with little experience
- Poorly labeled syringes or unlabeled drugs
- Wrong use of medication pump for administration
- Failure to learn about patients’ medical history with regard to allergic reactions to medication
Undergoing surgery is already scary enough because even the simplest procedures carry a risk for complications. When surgeons and other medical staff involved in a procedure make errors, the results can be catastrophic or deadly. Unfortunately, many medical errors are related to surgical procedures. These negligent surgical errors are examples of medical malpractice:
Retained Surgical Materials
Leaving items in a person’s body after surgery is one of the most common surgical errors. Even the most well-trained doctors and nurses make mistakes and sometimes close up a patient after surgery without removing everything they used to complete the procedure. Some of the most common surgical tools and other retained surgical materials include:
- Surgical sponges
- Cotton swabs
Not only are retained surgical materials dangerous and sometimes deadly, but malpractice victims must undergo another procedure to remove any leftover items. Sometimes patients go months before discovering their pain and discomfort is from a leftover surgical item.
Wrong-site surgeries rarely happen, but when they do, the results are often deadly. They typically occur from poor communication and/or inattentiveness. According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), wrong-site surgeries are a result of a breakdown in communication between hospital staff. Specifically, nurses and other medical professionals responsible for prepping a patient for surgery and surgical teams do not efficiently or accurately communicate with each other all the time. An example of a wrong-site surgery is a surgeon removing the wrong breast during a mastectomy or removing the wrong kidney during a transplant.
Wrong-procedure surgeries occur for the same or similar reasons as a wrong-site surgery and also have severe, catastrophic, or fatal consequences. Many scenarios can occur that fall under the wrong-procedure umbrella. Consider a breast cancer patient who is having a tumor removed, but the surgical team removes her breast instead. Any procedure on a specific organ, bone, or area of the body that is different from the planned surgery is malpractice.
Another egregious surgical error occurs when a surgical team operates on the wrong person. Much like the examples above, wrong-person surgeries typically occur from miscommunication and the failure to double-check patients prior to the procedure. Changes in practices over the last decade have eliminated these rare events because surgeons and other medical professionals must follow specific steps to ensure everything about their patients is correct. Yet, surgeons who fail to follow these practices put patients at risk for the consequences of a major surgical error.
For more than 30 years, parts of the medical community in the United States have warned doctors and patients about the dangers of unneeded surgery. According to research, many unneeded surgeries are a result of doctors and surgeons failing to keep abreast of the most recent medical research that allows them to perform less invasive procedures. The most common example of unneeded surgery is knee and spinal fusion surgery to repair the meniscus. Research shows spinal fusion does not help patients as much in the long-run as physical therapy and exercise.
The failure to diagnose or misdiagnose a disease or condition remains near the top of common medical malpractice cases. In recent years, Baylor University and Johns Hopkins have reported that diagnostic errors affect more than 12 million patients across the country each year. The failure to diagnose a patient prevents them from getting the care they need. In some cases, once a patient discovers their illness, it might be too late for treatment. The failure to diagnose cancer is often the most devastating form of malpractice because late-stage cancer patients are often terminal. Some consequences that patients face as a result of diagnostic errors include:
- Premature death
- Disease spread beyond the point of treatment
- Devastating physical pain
- Loss of different body functions and movement
- Surgery that might not have been needed with early detection
- More aggressive treatment which is typically more invasive, painful, and expensive
- Longer recovery time for those who have a chance a full recovery
- Permanent disability
When any of the examples of negligence discussed above lead to the death of a patient, eligible surviving family members have the legal right to take action against the hospital and or medical professionals allegedly responsible for the death by bringing a wrongful death suit. Wrongful death medical malpractice lawsuits compensate family members for losses associated with the death of their loved one.
Kansas City Medical Malpractice Attorneys Helping You Seek Compensation for Damages in Missouri Medical Negligence Cases
In the wake of medical malpractice, patients and their families typically suffer massive economic loss. Many cannot work as a result of their injury, disease, or treatment, and some can never return to their job. Medical bills pile up at the same time a victim is losing income from missing work. In the most severe cases of medical malpractice that require lengthy hospitalization and surgery, total medical treatment costs easily break into six figures. There is no reason why a victim of negligent medical treatment should have their finances negatively affected. An experienced medical malpractice lawyer in Kansas City can help you seek the compensation you deserve so that you can focus on recovering.
Seeking compensation for damages in medical malpractice cases allows victims to get the money they need to help pay for treatment and ease financial stress related to their injuries. Medical malpractice victims who prevail in their lawsuits could receive compensation for the following expenses and economic losses:
- Ambulance services
- Emergency room treatment
- Doctor visits
- Diagnostic testing including x-rays, MRIs, CT scans, blood panels, urine tests, and more
- Corrective surgery
- Prescription medications
- Travel to and from the hospital/doctor
If you have lost a loved one as a result of medical malpractice, you may be eligible for the damages above as well as receive compensation for burial costs and funeral expenses. Some family members also qualify for compensation based on their relationship with the decedent, including money for loss of companionship and loss of parental guidance or support.
How Can a Kansas City Medical Malpractice Lawyer Help?
Medical malpractice claims can be messy. Not only are multiple parties typically involved, but Missouri law has pre-suit requirements that plaintiffs must meet to file a medical malpractice claim. An experienced Kansas City medical malpractice lawyer, like Roger Nail, can help navigate the complexities of your case while you focus on healing. Some specific ways a Kansas City medical malpractice attorney can help include:
Not all unfavorable medical outcomes or injuries in a medical facility fall under the umbrella of medical malpractice. Roger Nail can evaluate the merits of your case and determine your eligibility to seek compensation for damages in civil court.
Your legal team can handle communication with insurance companies and other relevant parties so you can focus on recovery. Additionally, your Kansas City medical malpractice lawyer can protect you from any questionable tactics from an insurance company and ensure an adjuster does not pull your words out of context and try to use them to devalue your malpractice claim.
Prevailing in your medical malpractice case means uncovering all the facts surrounding your injuries and treatment. You can expect your medical malpractice attorney to look for witnesses, gather documents, and review your medical records to build the strongest case possible for your circumstances.
Attorneys and insurance companies place a monetary value on your malpractice claim that includes economic and non-economic losses, which sometimes require consulting with outside experts and specialists.
In general, the medical community wants to avoid going to court, so physicians and hospitals typically are ready to negotiate a settlement for a medical malpractice case. Your Kansas City medical malpractice attorney can handle tough negotiations and fight to get you the compensation you deserve.
Sometimes both sides cannot reach an agreeable settlement, which means your lawyer will need to advocate for you in court to help you prevail in your medical malpractice claim.