The Risks of Neurosurgery
While neurosurgeons are incredibly skilled in their chosen field, there are still all too many examples of patients suffering injuries either during a surgical procedure or directly afterwards. Some of these injuries are caused by medical negligence, which is otherwise known as medical malpractice.
There are a wide number of risks associated with quite literally having your skull cut open and your brain exposed to the light of day. Besides the risks that go along with any major surgery that requires anesthesia, such as problems breathing or having reactions to certain medications, risks of complication in brain surgery include either temporary or permanent impairment of coordination, vision, balance, muscle strength, memory, and speech. Additionally, bleeding in the brain or developing a blood clot can also occur. Other instances of complications associated with neurosurgery include coma, stroke, seizures, brain swelling, or infections taking root either in the brain, the skull, or the wound itself.
In many cases, these complications may arise through no fault of the medical staff performing your neurosurgical procedure. However, there are instances where your neurosurgeon or any of the medical professionals involved in your surgery may deviate from accepted practices – and this could result in what could easily be a catastrophic and permanent brain injury that changes your life.
The Legalities of Neurosurgery Malpractice
If you’ve been the victim of unforeseen complications stemming from neurosurgery – or if a loved one has been on the receiving end of such a complication – you may need to seek compensation from those medical staff involved in your surgical procedure. However, you need to know some highly specific things about how any medical negligence case is handled before you begin the process of bringing your lawsuit against those that you suspect caused the injury in question.
Medical malpractice, like all cases of professional negligence, requires five separate things to be true. First, the physician, surgeon, or another medical staff member that you want to accuse of malpractice must have had a specific duty of care towards you or your loved one. Secondly, this duty of care must have been breached, either through specific action or inaction. Next, the actions of this medical professional must have deviated from the standard of treatment that has been accepted by the medical community at large. Finally, the incident must have been both the direct and proximate cause of the injuries suffered – and these injuries must have also caused damage to the plaintiff, either through leading to an inability to work and earn a living or through physical, mental or emotional pain and suffering.
If you feel your particular case can meet all these requirements, there is a chance that the injuries you suffered could entitle you to personal injury compensation from the medical professionals that you would like to name as a defendant. If your case is particularly strong you may not even have a day in court – the defendant may offer you an out-of-court settlement award. If you feel this is sufficient, you can take the agreement; otherwise, you can risk a larger award by pursuing the case to trial in the hopes that you prevail.