If you suffered injuries or lost a loved one because of surgical errors, contact the Chicago Surgical Errors Lawyers at Zayed Law Offices for a free case evaluation.
When you put yourself under the care of a physician, you expect them to act with skill and competence. If an illness or condition compels you to undergo surgery, you should have every confidence in the ability of the doctor. In addition to formal education, surgeons must go through years of intense and rigorous training before they are allowed to operate without supervision. Surgical errors nevertheless still happen. Such a mistake can leave you much worse off than you were before. It can cause you and your family great financial and emotional strain. Contact a Medical Malpractice Lawyer today to discuss your legal options today.
Doctors make mistakes. Hospital staffers make mistakes. But those mistakes, especially surgical errors, can derail your life. You go into surgery and expect to come out feeling much better, but there is something wrong—and you can feel it. Negligence often causes mistakes, but sometimes, a mistake is grossly negligent or intentional.
The Hippocratic Oath and society hold medical professionals to a higher standard because of the extensive training and experience they receive—and because lives often depend on medical professionals. Those who suffer from surgical errors can hold the doctors and other medical professionals liable for negligence or gross negligence when the medical professionals err.
Table of Contents
- How Zayed Law Can Help
- Compensation After Surgical Errors
- Medical Malpractice and Surgical Errors in Chicago
- Working With Insurance Companies
- How a Lawyer Can Help
How Zayed Law Offices Can Help
Once you retain our firm, our lawyers and other professionals can start investigating your case. We collect evidence, speak to witnesses, start setting up depositions, and request documents, including medical records that you have not given us.
Once we obtain the evidence we need, we forward the insurance company a demand letter. If the insurance company denies your claim or counteroffers with a lowball amount, we discuss your options, including going to trial. Our attorneys have decades of experience handling settlement negotiations and trials, and we strive to get you the compensation you deserve.
You are not just another number to us. We take care to learn about all of your injuries and the cause of the injuries. We also speak with medical professionals to determine whether your injuries might cause long-term or permanent disabilities.
Some of our successes include $950,000 for injuries suffered during laparoscopic gallbladder surgery and a confidential settlement for a client whose doctor left a surgical tool inside their body, which caused dramatic and permanent injuries.
When you need a Chicago surgical error attorney, contact Zayed Law Offices today for a free case evaluation.
Recovering Compensation After Suffering Surgical Errors
Illinois allows for the recovery of compensatory damages only for medical malpractice cases. The court orders compensatory damages to make the plaintiff (you) whole again. The statutes divide compensatory damages into two types: Economic Damages and Non-Economic Damages.
Sometimes referred to as special damages, Economic Damages have a monetary value.
- Medical expenses.
- Lost wages.
- Loss of future earning capacity.
- Upgrades and updates to vehicles and homes to make them more accessible.
- Death-related damages, such as funeral and burial expenses, cremation expenses, and some probate court and/or probate attorney expenses.
Sometimes referred to as general damages, non-economic damages do not have a defined monetary value.
- Pain and suffering, including emotional distress.
- Loss of quality of life.
- Loss of companionship and/or consortium.
- Loss of use of a body part or bodily function.
- Amputation of a digit or limb.
- Excessive scarring and/or disfigurement.
The amount and type of damages you receive in a settlement or a jury trial depend on your injuries. If doctors expect the injuries to heal within a few months, you might not recover non-economic damages. However, if doctors believe that the injuries from surgical errors will cause long-term or permanent disabilities, you could recover non-economic damages.
The medical malpractice attorneys at Zayed Law Offices will fight to recover the compensation you deserve—not just the compensation the insurance company thinks it should pay.
Medical Malpractice and Surgical Errors in Chicago
Illinois has seen over an average of 10,000 medical malpractice reports each year. As the years progressed, the number of reports decreased. Holding a medical facility or professional responsible for their neglect with the help of Zayed Law Offices not only helps ensure you receive the compensation you deserve but also serves notice to other negligent medical professionals.
How Long Do I Have to Bring a Chicago Medical Claim?
Those who suffered surgical errors or otherwise have a medical malpractice claim have up to two years to file a claim. However, while two years might seem like a long time, that time gets eaten up quickly.
We recommend filing a medical malpractice claim as soon as possible after you learn of your surgical error. In some cases, the statute of limitations might already be running, and you might not have the full two years.
An attorney at Zayed Law Offices will review your medical records and can tell you how much time you have to take legal action.
Injuries Caused by Surgical Errors
Surgical errors include several types of mistakes, including but not limited to:
- Injuring nerves by burning them or cutting them during surgery.
- Medication errors, including too much anesthesia.
- Cutting in the wrong place.
- Leaving instruments, sponges, and other medical items in the body.
- Operating on the wrong body part.
- Operating on the wrong person.
Working With Insurance Companies
Often, people believe that they can fight the insurance companies themselves. However, medical malpractice cases are difficult. Additionally, an insurance company loses money every time it pays a claim; thus, it will often do anything to deny a claim or pay as little as possible.
When you retain a surgical error medical malpractice lawyer, insurance companies know they have a much higher risk of going to court. Thus, they are more likely to settle for a fair and reasonable amount.
Surgical error cases become even more complex when more than one defendant is responsible for your injuries and disabilities. A surgical error attorney helps ensure you can recover the compensation you deserve, including future medical expenses, loss of future earning capacity, and pain and suffering.
The Nature of Surgical Errors
Stories of surgical errors have been widely reported in the media. Most people have heard about surgical instruments, sponges, gauzes, and needles being left inside patients. There have even been instances in which the wrong patient has been put under the knife or the wrong surgery conducted. Even more horrifying are those cases in which the wrong limb or other body part was removed.
There is simply no excuse for such errors. They are caused by the negligence and inattention of the surgeon or their team. All the training and education in the world cannot make up for lack of focus, discipline, and diligence. Your doctor has a duty to confirm and re-confirm the status of the person they are operating on, the specifics of their condition, the efficacy of the proposed procedure, and their ability to carry out the operation. When this doesn’t happen, the risk of a surgical error increases.
Before the Surgery
You should discuss the surgery with your doctor before the surgery. Indeed, surgeons should encourage this. As a patient, you have a right to know what exactly will be done to your body. You should confirm the part of the body that will be operated on. And you should also be apprised of the risks, period of convalescence, and possible long-term effects of the surgery.
If you will undergo a surgery in which you will be conscious, you may want to use a local anaesthetic. You should discuss the various options with your surgeon. The Joint Commission has published a protocol for surgeons that requires the use of checklists to confirm the right body part will be operated on.
When a Surgery Goes Wrong
It may take some time before you realize a surgery has gone wrong. The discovery of the error may leave you shocked, outraged, and confused. These are perfectly natural responses. And as you recover from both the physical effects of the surgery and the emotional devastation caused by the news of the error, you should contact a medical malpractice lawyer.
It is important to remember that the effects of a surgical error may not be readily apparent. If in the days or weeks after the surgery your condition rapidly declines, it can be an indication that an error of some kind was made. Indeed, your lawyer will need to assess the exact nature of your condition before they can decide whether you have a case against the surgeon. During the initial consultation, the lawyer you contacted will ask you to recall the pre-surgery counselling you received and will ask to see the consent form you signed. They will also ask you specific questions about your health, including your prognosis for recovery. If things look bad, then you may have a good case against the surgeon.
Once the hospital has realized that an error has been made, they will launch an immediate investigation. They will send people to interview and gather facts from you. You should answer no questions or make any statements to hospital or insurance officials without the presence of a lawyer. Indeed, you should let your lawyer speak for you. It is important that you not make any statement that undermines or weakens your case against the surgeon whose negligence and inattention has caused you so much pain.
How a Lawyer Can Help You Get Compensation
You need not file a lawsuit straightaway against the surgeon. If there is clear evidence that an error has been made, then the insurance company may offer you a settlement figure. If the money compensates you for additional expenses incurred, wages lost, and the pain and suffering you’ve endured, your lawyer may advise you to take it. If the figure is too low and the insurance company refuses to budge, then you may have to file suit.
Surgical errors are preventable. They occur for a variety of reasons, including poor communication among the medical team, undertrained physicians, fatigue, inattention, and poor operating room conditions. Your lawyer will launch their own investigations into the surgery and the individuals involved in it. They will get to the bottom of why things went wrong. They will then use these facts to compel the insurance company to offer you a just and adequate compensation figure.
The medical malpractice attorneys at Zayed Law Offices can fight to help ensure you pursue the compensation you deserve when a doctor’s negligence causes you pain and suffering. Contact our surgical error lawyers at (312) 883-6907 or contact us through our website today. Your initial case evaluation is always free and without obligation.