What Are Some Examples of Famous Medical Malpractice Cases? – Morgan & Morgan
Medical malpractice can be painful, upsetting, expensive, and potentially fatal for a patient. However, if you experienced serious medical negligence, you could have the right to pursue compensation for medical costs, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.
Read on to learn about famous medical malpractice cases and how you, too, could get justice and compensation by filing a medical malpractice lawsuit. Our medical malpractice lawyers are determined to help victims get what they deserve and need to rebuild their lives. Discover your legal options today by contacting us for a free case review.
Famous Medical Malpractice Cases
Medical malpractice cases are on the rise. According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, medical negligence is now responsible for almost as many deaths as the two biggest killers in this country: heart disease and cancer. Some of the most famous medical malpractice cases in recent years include:
$216.7 Million in Damages for Misdiagnosis
The 2006 medical malpractice settlement for Allan Navarro is one of the largest medical malpractice payouts in recent years. According to the Tampa Bay newspaper, Allan Navarro was left permanently disabled after a wrong diagnosis in the emergency room.
Navarro had visited the clinic complaining of symptoms indicative of a stroke but was sent home with the wrong diagnosis of sinusitis and a prescription of painkillers. The resulting injuries of this misdiagnosis left Navarro permanently confined to a wheelchair. The medical malpractice lawsuit resulted in $100.1 million in punitive damages and $116.7 million in compensation for Navarro and his family.
$135 Million in Damages for a Surgery Mistake
In 2018, 10-year-old Faith DeGrand recovered $135 million in damages after suffering paralysis due to medical malpractice at the Children’s Hospital of Detroit Medical Center. The medical malpractice incident occurred while Faith was undergoing scoliosis surgery in 2010. Instead of removing wrongly inserted rods from her back, the surgeon waited ten days to correct the mistake. As a result, Faith suffered permanent paralysis and will need lifelong assistance with daily living tasks.
Examples of Morgan & Morgan’s Recent Malpractice Wins
We have the resources and attorneys at our disposal to handle a variety of medical malpractice cases. Some of our famous medical malpractice cases include:
Failure to Diagnose or Late Diagnosis
One of Morgan & Morgan’s medical malpractice lawyers helped recover $28.5 million in damages for the victim and family in Tampa. The case arose due to failure to diagnose and treat encephalitis, a potentially deadly brain inflammation.
Our attorneys fought for a settlement of $9.278 million for injuries caused due to a delayed cancer diagnosis. The cancer was allowed to spread and cause organ damage due to a medical provider’s failure to diagnose the disease.
Morgan & Morgan’s Delray Beach malpractice lawyers achieved a $6.33 million verdict in the case of a woman suffering a cardiac arrest and subsequent permanent vegetative state. A doctor had failed to diagnose and treat the woman’s heart disease, leading to her permanent injury.
A 26-week-old premature newborn was injured due to a medication overdose in a Florida hospital. Our medical malpractice attorneys helped the family recover $19.2 million in damages.
The family of a baby seriously injured in Florida due to an obstetrician delaying a life-saving C-section won a verdict of $38.75 million with our help.
Morgan & Morgan’s medical malpractice attorneys can handle all types of medical malpractice cases. Get in touch if you or a loved one suffered injuries due to an avoidable medical mistake.
What Is Medical Malpractice?
Most medical treatments come with accepted risks, and a bad outcome does not necessarily qualify for a medical malpractice lawsuit. To have a medical malpractice case, victims must prove that a medical professional acted negligently and failed to apply a reasonable standard of care when treating a patient.
Proving a medical malpractice case typically involves medical experts determining whether a doctor made an avoidable mistake or acted recklessly. If a patient suffered injuries and financial damages due to a medical provider’s negligence, they could seek compensation by filing a lawsuit.
Common Examples of Medical Malpractice
Medical malpractice cases come in many different forms, such as:
Late diagnosis and misdiagnosis can lead to devastating complications for patients. A delayed cancer diagnosis or misdiagnosed heart attack, for example, can be fatal.
Surgery and Anesthesia Mistakes
Every surgery comes with risks which can involve infection, pain, and even death. However, if a surgery or anesthesia error occurs due to the carelessness of a medical professional, victims could have legal recourse. Examples of surgery negligence include:
- Operating on the wrong patient
- Surgery on the wrong side or the wrong organ
- Failing to monitor vital signs during the operation and afterwards
- Using too much or too little anesthesia
- Forgetting equipment inside a patient’s body
- Unsanitary operating practices
- Lack of adequate aftercare
Birth injuries can occur when a doctor fails to recognize that an urgent C-section is required, for example. Injuries can also occur due to the inappropriate use of assistive devices such as forceps or vacuum pumps. According to Stanford Children’s Health, common birth injuries include:
- Facial paralysis
- Swelling of the brain
- Nerve damage
If labor goes on for too long, a baby can suffer oxygen deprivation, potentially resulting in permanent brain damage and disability.
The emotional and financial fallout of a serious birth condition can be crushing for a family. Morgan & Morgan can fight for the funds you need to secure the future of your child.
Damages in Medical Malpractice Lawsuits
While it can be challenging to generalize about the value of settlements in medical malpractice claims, victims could qualify for various damages. Examples of non-economic damages you could pursue:
- Emotional anguish
- Physical pain and suffering
- Reduction of life quality
- Permanent disability
- Loss of a limb
- Scarring and disfigurement
Economic damages are designed to reimburse victims for healthcare costs and other financial damages arising from an injury and can include:
- Medical bills and future medical costs
- Lost income
- Medical transportation costs
- Costs to modify the home or vehicle
- Out-of-pocket expenses
You could receive other compensation, depending on your specific medical malpractice case.
What Is the Average Settlement for Medical Malpractice?
There is no average settlement figure for medical malpractice cases, as recovery will depend on the severity of the injury and the extent of damages. However, the payout could be considerable if you suffered a catastrophic, life-changing, or permanently disabling injury. Some famous medical malpractice cases involved settlements of several million dollars.
Typically, compensatory damages should cover the costs of medical treatment now and in the future, wage losses, and any other financial consequences arising from malpractice injuries. Victims could also recover non-economic compensation for their suffering, lost life quality, and other damages. A court could also award punitive damages in particularly reckless cases of medical negligence.
Whom Could I Sue in a Medical Malpractice Case?
Most victims assume that only doctors can be held liable for medical malpractice. However, you could hold any licensed medical practitioner to account for medical malpractice, and in some cases, even a hospital or other medical institution. Depending on your case, you could sue:
Doctors and Surgeons
Doctors are ultimately responsible for the medical care of a patient. For example, if a doctor fails to provide an accurate diagnosis or neglects to order diagnostic tests, they could be responsible for your damages. In some cases, a doctor could also be responsible for the actions of medical staff working under their direction.
Patients rely on radiologists’ interpretation of diagnostic imaging tests such as MRIs. Therefore, if a patient is harmed due to a radiologist misinterpreting tests or failing to communicate results, a radiologist could be held liable for medical malpractice.
Nurses typically have the most contact with a patient, especially in a hospital or care home setting. Patients can come to serious harm when nurses make avoidable mistakes, such as administering the wrong medication or failing to monitor vital signs.
Hospitals and Other Medical Care Centers
Victims can potentially hold hospitals, urgent care centers, and other medical establishments to account for a medical malpractice injury. Clinics are required to hire competent and qualified staff. If an injury was caused by incompetent medical staff, or due to unsanitary conditions, for example, a hospital could be held to account.
If you got hurt due to bad dentistry, you could sue a dentist for compensation. Examples of medical malpractice in dentistry include, among others:
- Treating the wrong tooth
- Failing to diagnose cancer, gum disease, or another condition
- Infections due to poor hygiene
- Performing unnecessary dental work
- Permanent injury to nerves during dental procedures
Several other parties could be liable for a medical malpractice injury. In some cases, a victim could have a case against several defendants such as a surgeon, anesthetist, and hospital. Since it can be tricky to know who you could sue, consulting with a medical malpractice lawyer from our firm can provide clarity about your options.
Is there a Time Limit for Filing a Medical Malpractice Case?
If you or a loved one potentially has a medical malpractice case, you should seek legal advice as soon as possible. Medical malpractice cases are generally subject to a time limit, called the statute of limitations, which varies from one state to another. The time to file a suit can be as short as one year, depending on where you intend to file.
How Can I Find a Good Medical Malpractice Lawyer?
Referrals from a lawyer you trust, a family member, or a friend, can be an excellent way to find a medical malpractice lawyer.
The Internet provides a great resource when looking for a good medical malpractice lawyer. Some websites you could use for finding a lawyer:
- Specialized medical malpractice lawyer’s websites
- Your state’s bar association website
- Lawyer directories such as Avvo
Can I Handle a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit Without an Attorney?
Medical malpractice cases involve complex legal and medical issues and can be challenging and time-consuming to litigate. Moreover, most if not all medical malpractice lawsuits require expert witnesses. A specialized medical malpractice attorney can handle your case and knows where to find the relevant medical experts that can testify on your behalf.
Victims of medical malpractice can also underestimate the complexity of the technical procedures for filing a medical malpractice case. Missing a deadline or making a mistake on an important court document could get your case thrown out. Having a qualified and experienced attorney in your corner can give you peace of mind and time to concentrate on healing rather than on dealing with complicated legal matters.
How Can Morgan & Morgan Help Me With a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit?
Our motivated and experienced medical malpractice lawyers can work tirelessly for the best possible outcome of your medical malpractice case. We can:
- Determine whether your case is worth pursuing
- Help you navigate the legal system
- Identify all liable parties
- File the paperwork required for your case
- Liaise with your medical providers
- Gather the necessary evidence to prove your case
- Obtain medical expert witnesses to testify in your case
- Negotiating a fair settlement on your behalf
- Presenting your case aggressively at trial
Our Medical Malpractice Attorneys Are Ready to Fight for You
An injury due to medical malpractice can turn your entire life upside down. Victims of medical malpractice may be permanently disabled and have to deal with catastrophic physical and emotional injuries as a result of a doctor’s carelessness. Morgan & Morgan knows what you are going through, and we can be here for you during this difficult time.
Our experienced and compassionate medical malpractice attorneys have been standing up to medical professionals and hospitals for many years, fighting for the rights of injured patients. Hiring our attorneys is free unless and until you win. Call us now at (877) 537-0246 or fill in our online form to determine whether you could pursue compensation.