Should you instigate a medical malpractice case when you believe that a doctor's negligence led to your injuries? The law allows you to do this, but in practice, it's best to review the strength of your claim first. For example, you probably have a weak case if your situation meets any of these three conditions:
The Injury Has a Minimal Impact on the Quality of Your Life
One of the things the court will consider is the impact the injury has made on your quality of life. Consider a case in which a nurse's negligence leaves you with an upset stomach and you have to miss work for a couple of days, but fully recover after that. This is a case of medical malpractice, but it is a weak one because the effect on your quality of life is minimal.
Contrast this with a medical error that leaves you permanently blind in one eye. Blindness is a serious disability that even limits the types of job you can do. Therefore, it would make a strong case of medical negligence.
You Received Standard Care
Another essential factor to consider is the type of care you received. If the doctor (or whoever was handling your case) did everything that any other doctor would have done in his or her place, then your case may not be as strong as you think. After all, medicine is an imprecise science, and there are always risks associated with most procedures. However, if the doctor failed to act or gave you nonstandard care, then you have a strong case.
For example, a doctor that gives you an experimental drug while ignoring standard treatment for the same illness is likely to face a strong malpractice case. This is especially true if the doctor does this without seeking your informed consent.
Preexisting Conditions Complicate Your Condition
Preexisting conditions can muddle up your medical malpractice case. As a layman, you may think that a doctor's negligence led to your injury while, in the real case, one of your preexisting medical conditions is responsible. In fact, even if the issue isn't clear-cut, and doctors can't pinpoint the root of your injuries, it's still easier for the court (or even the jury) to side with the medical practitioner as compared to you. This is because he or she is a medical professional; without compelling evidence it's easier to believe you are mistaken than to believe that the doctor erred.
Although you should not pursue a case without determining its strength, it is not up to you to decide whether or not you have a good case. Rather, you should consult an experienced medical malpractice attorney, like Fitzsimmons & Vervaecke Law Firm, to review it first. You can then use your attorney's advice to decide how to proceed.