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When you receive medical treatment or undergo a surgical procedure, you expect to recover and get better, not worse. Unfortunately, some patients worsen due to a doctor or nurse’s carelessness or negligence.

If you or someone you love were harmed by a doctor, nurse, or other medical professional, you need the help of a highly experienced Fort Lauderdale personal injury lawyer. A Fort Lauderdale medical malpractice attorney from Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath will put their experience to work for you to obtain total compensation.

To schedule your free consultation, please get in touch with us online or call (561) 867-4117.

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What should I do after experiencing malpractice?

1. Seek medical attention to correct the mistake

Speak with another doctor as soon as possible to get a second opinion and see what can be done to correct the error. The new doctor will thoroughly review your medical records and might be able to help verify that malpractice has occurred.

2. Obtain a copy of your medical records

Ask for a complete copy of your medical records, including all lab reports, imaging, scans, doctor and staff notes, and a log of when your file was accessed and by whom, for both your paper and electronic file.

Request in writing so that you have a paper trail of what you requested and when it was requested and so that you can compare what documents were provided to those that you asked for.

3. Keep a daily log of symptoms

After the initial incident or when you start to believe that the care you received was harmful rather than helpful, keep a daily log of the symptoms you’re experiencing and their effect on your life. Although it’s very easy to keep these notes in a handwritten journal, as an extra precaution, email yourself photos of the journal pages or make an email thread to yourself of these notes so that it’s more easily accessible and more protected.

4. Hire a Fort Lauderdale malpractice attorney

Contact a Fort Lauderdale malpractice attorney immediately after any serious medical issues resulting from the malpractice have been addressed and treated. Medical malpractice is a complex area of law, and your attorney will want to begin their investigation and preserve evidence immediately.

How much does it cost to hire a Fort Lauderdale medical malpractice attorney?

When you choose Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath to represent you through this challenging time, you won’t pay a dime unless we win your case. So, don’t worry about the out-of-pocket costs associated with the lawsuit—there won’t be any.

We might even be able to arrange treatment with medical providers who will provide treatment using an attorney’s lien. This means they’ll defer collecting payment until your case has been resolved via settlement or jury verdict.

Are there different types of medical malpractice?

Here’s a quick look at some of the more common forms of medical malpractice.

Diagnosis errors

A doctor might misdiagnose a patient or take longer than they should have to diagnose a health issue. Either type of diagnostic error can result in a potentially life-threatening situation and could lead to a patient receiving the wrong kind of medication or treatment.

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Medication errors

Taking the wrong type of medicine could result in severe complications or even death. Medication errors in medical malpractice include prescribing the wrong medication, not considering the side effects of drugs and how they might affect you, or ignoring potentially dangerous interactions with other medicines. For example, administering a paralytic agent rather than a sedative in surgery would be a medication error.

Surgical mistakes

There are many different kinds of errors that can happen during surgery. A doctor may leave a tool or a sponge inside a patient’s body, which can remain there for years and lead to excruciating pain and other problems. Surgeons can also mistakenly damage perfectly healthy organs or even operate on the wrong part of a patient’s body. Unnecessary surgery may also be considered malpractice in certain situations.

Birth injuries

These are among the most heartbreaking of medical mistakes, sometimes causing life-altering issues that a baby may have to deal with for decades to come. Sadly, in many instances, birth injuries can be fatal but are preventable.

What kinds of damages can I claim?

When you file a medical malpractice lawsuit with the assistance of a Fort Lauderdale medical malpractice attorney, you’re doing it to recover the financial losses you’ve incurred due to the injury caused by the medical error. The two main categories are economic and non-economic damages.

Economic damages

These are tangible losses that are relatively simple to calculate. Two of the most common are medical expenses and lost wages.

A medical malpractice lawsuit may provide you compensation for your current bills and any bills you may accumulate for additional treatment.

If you can’t work because of your malpractice-related injury, you’ll lose income and benefits you would’ve accrued had you been at work. You might also miss out on a promotion or pay raise due to your absence, and your injury might prevent you from doing the same job or from working altogether.

Non-economic damages

These are more difficult to calculate because they don’t necessarily come with a bill or invoice. Only a skilled, experienced Fort Lauderdale medical malpractice attorney will know their worth and how to calculate them. Non-economic damages include the following.

  • Emotional and psychological distress – You’re not only going through a great deal of physical pain, but you’re likely also suffering emotionally. Your attorney will consider this when demanding compensation from the defendant’s insurance provider.
  • Diminished quality of life – Medical malpractice may result in your inability to do the things you once enjoyed. For example, you might have been an avid runner, but you’ve suffered permanent nerve damage to your leg due to a botched surgery, making it very unlikely that you’ll ever be able to run again. This can lead to profound depression. You’re entitled to compensation for that depression, and your attorney will work very hard to help you get it.

How do you prove medical malpractice?

The importance of a detailed investigation by your attorney can’t be overstated. Part of this investigation will likely include a discussion with a medical expert in the same field of care you received. If, for example, a surgeon botched your heart surgery, that expert will also be a heart surgeon and will look at the standard of care you received.

If the expert feels the surgeon didn’t uphold the appropriate standard of care that another doctor with the same or similar training would have provided, you will likely have a valid malpractice claim. The expert will spell out their findings in a legal document known as an affidavit, which will then be presented to the negligent doctor’s insurance company.

There are many other ways medical malpractice can be proven; however, it depends on the facts of your unique case.

How long do I have to file a claim?

Florida has a two-year statute of limitations for medical malpractice victims. This means that you must file your claim within two years of either the date of the injury or from the first day they realized they’d suffered harm due to medical negligence. If the statute of limitations expires, you can no longer take legal action.

Although two years seems like a long time, you shouldn’t delay filing your claim – in fact, you should act as quickly as possible. Attorneys need time to perform a detailed investigation, gather evidence, and identify liable parties.

We’ll work to obtain maximum compensation in your case

Don’t settle for an attorney who’s “good enough” – for the best outcome, you need an experienced attorney who’s respected in the community. Attorneys at Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath have a deep understanding of this area of the law and a substantial successful track record of obtaining settlements and awards for our clients.

Although no money will compensate for your suffering, equitable compensation will help provide financial security. It will hold those medical professionals accountable for their mistakes, hopefully preventing them from making them.

Who may be liable for my injury?

Another reason a medical malpractice case can be challenging to navigate is that there might be more than one responsible party. The doctor, nurses, and other personnel could be held liable for the harm that was caused.

You may also be able to sue the hospital or clinic where you were treated, as well as any drug or equipment manufacturers who may have contributed to your suffering. Your attorney will uncover these details as they investigate and work through the discovery process.

Our Fort Lauderdale medical malpractice attorneys are ready to help

To learn more about how we may be able to help you or a loved one who’s suffered as a result of a medical professional’s negligence, contact aFort Lauderdale personal injury attorney with Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath. Complete the online contact form or call (561) 867-4117.

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