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The Attorney and You

If some doctors and hospitals had their way, lawyers would become an extinct species. Most medical professionals have little love for malpractice attorneys because they are usually on the receiving end of a subpoena.

Medical malpractice attorneys provide an invaluable service for patients or family members of a patient who has been injured by some sort of medical error. No one goes into the hospital thinking that what they will come out damage from an error. Unfortunately, medical mistakes do happen and people do get injured.

What Will a Lawyer Do for You?

A lawyer will act as your advocate to make sure that all of your rights are preserved in the event that a lawsuit must be filed and taken to court. Once in the courtroom, the attorney will present all the facts of the case and review witnesses on the stand. If they present the case in the evidence is overwhelming, you will likely go home knowing that you have won your case.

How You Got Here

You found out you needed surgery after you visited your doctor and had some tests. The doctor's office scheduled the surgery, and you went home to wait until your appointed date and time. On the appropriate day, you entered the hospital and completed the many pages of forms they required you to sign.

As they were getting you prepared for surgery, maybe you were nervous. But you never thought that there would be any lasting problems. The doctor came and asked if you have any questions and told you what to expect when you woke up. Then they wheeled you back, and you went into the oblivion of anesthetic sleep.

As soon as you woke up, you knew that there was a problem. It was hard to breathe and your throat felt like it was swelled up. Your husband came in when you were completely awake and explained that they had damaged your airway when they put the breathing tube in your throat.

You never saw your doctor after that. Another physician was sent to explain the results of your surgery. He seemed reluctant to share any information about the prognosis for your injury. Not only did you suffer because you had difficulty breathing, but now, you also had to worry because you didn't know what was going to happen.

After the Hospital

Once they released you from the hospital, your husband made an appointment with another doctor that you did not know. The new doctor examined your records and explained that your injury would not last your entire life. Indeed, soon you would be completely recovered. While you were glad to hear good news, you still struggled with nightmares about waking up unable to breathe. You and your husband talked and decided that it would be best to consult an attorney.

Interview with a Lawyer

You searched the Yellow Pages and found an attorney that specialized in malpractice cases. You set the appointment for the consultation and waited. Once you got to your meeting, you were impressed with the professionalism and knowledge of the lawyer sitting across from you. He advised that you had a good case and suggested that you pursue damages against the anesthesiologist, the surgeon, and the hospital for medical negligence. He advised that you would likely receive compensation for pain and suffering as well as damages that would cover your hospital bills.

You agreed with the lawyer and the process started. Your attorney presented a compelling case at the trial, and won on your behalf. While you were happy to receive just compensation, you were a little sad at the same time. You didn’t do this because you wanted to harm the doctor. You didn't do this because you wanted to get rich. You just didn't want it to happen to someone else and you needed your medical bills taken care of because of all the time that you couldn't work.

What Happens to the Doctor Now?

You had another meeting with your lawyer today. As you were finalizing all the steps that needed to be taken, you couldn't resist asking your lawyer a question. You wondered what happened to the doctor. Would he still be able to practice?

Your lawyer was silent for just a moment. Then he asked you if you felt bad about pursuing litigation. You told him you were not sorry, but you just hoped that the doctor didn't lose everything. The lawyer told you not to worry, because the doctor was still in practice. But because of your actions, all parties had to pay more to their insurance companies. The good news was that your case was a wake-up call to everyone involved. It spurred the hospital and the doctors to implement new procedures that would help avoid further errors. And this all happened because of you. Sometimes medical malpractice cases are necessary.