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5 Common Types of a Medical Negligence Claim

Types of Medical Negligence

Doctors save lives. Unfortunately, many careless doctors also injure patients, sometimes fatally.

If you believe that a doctor has been negligent while treating you, then you might have a valid legal claim for compensation.

At PhillyLaw, we have handled many medical negligence claims and are anxious to meet with you.

Below are some of the most common types of medical negligence that you should be aware of.

Surgical Errors

Very few errors happen in surgery, but when they do the results can be catastrophic. Negligent surgeons have:

  • Left implements behind in the patient’s body.
  • Performed the surgery poorly and damaged nearby organs or nerves.
  • Failed to properly scrub in and as a result spread an infection to the patient.
  • Performed surgery on the wrong body part or even on the wrong patient.
  • Caused significant scarring and disfigurement, especially when performing plastic surgery on the face.

Surgical errors often require costly and time-consuming corrective surgery, which can leave patients holed up in the hospital for weeks afterwards.


Of all the types of medical negligence we see, misdiagnosis is perhaps the most frustrating.

When a doctor fails to properly diagnose a patient, necessary and life-saving treatment can be delayed or denied altogether.

There are two types of misdiagnosis:

  • The doctor says you are fine and completely misses the medical condition you have.
  • The doctor wrongly identifies the problem and gives you a wrong diagnosis.

Either way, many patients end up gravely ill or even dead when a doctor makes a wrong diagnosis. If you seem to be getting worse, even after meeting with a doctor, then get a second opinion. Your initial doctor might have missed something.

Birth Injuries to Mother or Child

Pregnancy is rife with problems. Indeed, the maternal mortality rate in the United States is rising, which is staggering for a First World country. A negligent doctor can injure either the baby or the mother, or both.

At our practice, we have seen careless doctors:

  • Not order a C-section in a timely manner
  • Prolong labor unnecessarily
  • Fail to monitor or respond to signs of fetal distress during labor or after delivery
  • Perform delivery in a way that injures the baby, such as tugging up on the arm, which can permanently injure nerves

Some babies suffer permanent brain damage as a result of the doctor’s negligence, which only shows up later in the form of learning disabilities, physical disabilities, or behavioral problems.

Other types of medical malpractice involving labor and delivery include:

  • Failing to monitor the mother’s vital signs to identify high or low blood pressure
  • Failing to respond to signs the mother has internal bleeding
  • Neglecting to follow up with mothers to find out how they are feeling after delivery

Lack of Informed Consent

Before ordering treatment, a doctor should disclose the risks of treatment and all meaningful and known side effects. The doctor should also discuss alternatives to the proposed treatment, such as other therapies or no treatment at all.

Only by having all of this information can a patient make an informed decision about their medical care.

If a doctor does not disclose the risks of treatment, then you might have a medical negligence claim for compensation.

Everything depends on what information you received, so meet with an attorney as soon as possible to review what the doctor told you.

Prescription Drug Errors

Many patients need prescription drugs to treat medical conditions or to relieve pain. A doctor can make several errors with prescription drugs:

  • Not prescribing the right medicine
  • Prescribing wrong medication that ends up harming you
  • Prescribing the wrong dosage of medication
  • Not realizing that you are allergic to medication
  • Not checking whether your current medications will interact negatively with the medication prescribed

As a result of prescription drug errors, many patients suffer unnecessary pain, or they end up becoming ill or dying. Some patients will get better once they receive the correct medication, but others have suffered permanent injuries.

Contact a Philadelphia Medical Negligence Attorney Now

These medical negligence case examples should give you some idea of what types of mistakes can result in a lawsuit for compensation.

These are complicated cases, so the best step is to meet with an attorney who will be able to analyze the circumstances and decide whether you have a valid claim.

Pennsylvania does not make medical malpractice cases easy. For example, you will need an expert witness who can testify as to whether the doctor followed the proper standard of care.

Hiring a seasoned attorney is critical. You can contact PhillyLaw LLC by calling 215-515-2050 to schedule a free case review.



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