Every day, millions of Americans trust their doctors to treat them properly and efficiently. This is especially true for patients who might be suffering from a serious health issue, such as a stroke. In the United States, strokes are a leading cause of death and a major cause of disability in adults. A stroke is a sudden interruption in the blood supply of the brain, typically caused by an abrupt blockage of arteries that lead to the brain—or from bleeding into brain tissue when a blood vessel bursts. The impact of a stroke depends on what part of the brain it occurs in—but always requires immediate medical attention from competent doctors.
As a patient, or loved one of someone suffering a stroke, you put all your trust and faith into your medical provider to diagnose and treat the stroke with no lasting complications. Unfortunately, not every clinician meets the same standard of care, and medical malpractice occurs more often than you might realize. According to Marvin Ross Friedman, a leading attorney at Friedman & Friedman, “Medical malpractice occurs when a clinician falls below the standard of care that the patient should receive—or what a reasonable physician in their specialty would do in those same circumstances.” One common form of medical malpractice is a stroke misdiagnosis, where a doctor fails to recognize a stroke while it is happening or immediately after—or misses signs of an imminent stroke.
Stroke misdiagnosis is very serious and can result in permanent disability or even death. The brain is the control center of the human body, and because a stroke affects the brain, it can result in problems pertaining to intellectual abilities, emotional and personality changes, physical disabilities and more.
Potential consequences of a misdiagnosed or undiagnosed stroke:
Correct stroke diagnosis and treatment are essential for managing and preventing these complications. A medical provider should do a thorough review of the patient’s health history, complete a detailed physical exam, as well as provide the proper testing to accurately diagnose a stroke. If treatment is done quickly, it has the potential to stop the damage from progressing or worsening. Delayed treatment, or none at all, allows brain cell death to continue—which can quickly escalate into severe health problems.
Failure to treat or diagnose a stroke can be life-threatening and should never be ignored—especially if you suspect that the clinician provided insufficient care. In the state of Florida, the standard of care is defined as the level of care, skill, and treatment which, given all the facts of the patient and his or her condition, is recognized as acceptable and appropriate by similar healthcare providers. If a clinician fell below this standard by incorrectly diagnosing your (or a loved one’s) stroke, you may be entitled to compensation.
It’s also important to know the statute of limitations when filing your medical malpractice lawsuit. In Florida, you must file a suit within two years of the date on which harm resulting from the malpractice was, or should have been, discovered. Additionally, in the state of Florida, healthcare providers may not be sued for medical malpractice more than four years after the malpractice incident occurs, unless there are extenuating circumstances. However, there are exceptions in cases of fraud, concealment, or misrepresentation perpetrated on behalf of the medical provider. This is why it is critical for you to speak with a medical malpractice lawyer as soon as you can after the incident—even if you aren’t sure you have a case.
If you believe that you or a loved one have suffered injury or death due to medical malpractice, then it’s time to connect with the attorneys at Friedman & Friedman. We understand that the outcome of your med malpractice case could have a major impact on your life, and we take that responsibility very seriously. As your legal representative, we will be unrelenting in pursuing your goals as a client—and seeking the justice you deserve.
The lawyers at Friedman & Friedman have won a number of medical malpractice cases—including John Strinko v. Baptist Hospital, where we won a settlement of $1.5 million for our client who suffered from a misdiagnosed stroke. With our winning track record and expertise, we’re the perfect law firm for your medical malpractice case. To learn more about who we serve and what we can do for you, contact us today.