Colorado Medical Malpractice Attorneys
Medical malpractice, also known as medical negligence, occurs when a health care provider’s negligent act or omission results in injury. When the medical negligence results in an injury or a wrongful death, a medical malpractice lawsuit can be filed against the healthcare professional if that provider deviated from generally accepted standards of practice.
Any lawsuit that seeks damages due to negligent care and treatment by a healthcare provider, be it a doctor, nurse, therapist or other medical provider, is generally referred to as a medical malpractice lawsuit. In order to establish a medical malpractice case, the attorney must prove that i) the healthcare provider was negligent, ii) the negligence caused the injury, and iii) you sustained a loss or damages as a result of that injury.
Proving that a health care provider was negligent is done by showing that the treatment was below the standard of care that a reasonably careful physician would have been provided under the same or similar circumstances.
Any health care provider can be held liable for medical malpractice. This includes anesthesiologists, emergency care professionals, nurses, pharmacists, technicians, therapists and other medical providers. Hospitals, ambulatory surgical centers or out-patient surgery centers, medical centers and nursing homes can also be negligent.
There are a variety of situations in which medical malpractice occurs. Examples of medical malpractice include, but are not limited to, the following:
- surgical errors
- anesthesia errors
- hospital errors
- nursing errors
- medication errors
- emergency room malpractice
- failure to properly diagnosis
- failure to timely or properly treat or monitor
If you or a loved one is a victim of medical malpractice, you need the expertise of highly skilled and experienced medical malpractice lawyers. If you believe that the actions of a healthcare provider fall below the required standard of care, or delivered substandard care, the lawyers at Boesen Law can help. Our lawyers provide knowledgeable guidance through all types of serious medical malpractice cases.
- Types of Cases
Any injury to a child is horrifying for both the child and family. Substandard care can result from a health care provider failing to provide timely and proper medical care to a pregnant mother. Injuries may arise at any time during the pregnancy, from prenatal care, to medical mistakes made during labor, delivery or post-delivery. This substandard care can result in Devastating injuries to the child or even death.
Common birth injury medical malpractice cases include failing to detect warning signs in fetal heart monitor tracings, failing to plan, order or perform a C-section when medical conditions change, or failing to diagnose and treat an infection. When these or other situations occur, a case may be able to be brought against one or more health care providers. Those providers may include an obstetrician, a nurse or a midwife.
One type of birth injury case is Cerebral Palsy. In many cases, the cerebral palsy could have been prevented and was the result of substandard medical care by one or more health care providers. Cerebral palsy is a disease of the nervous system and can manifest itself in many ways including involuntary or spastic movement, muscle stiffuess or imbalance. Cerebral palsy can often times be the result ofa traumatic occurrence the baby suffered either prior to or during the birthing process. These situations can cause injury to the development of or damage to the baby’s brain, resulting in cerebral palsy. Some traumatic events include a lack of oxygen to the baby, often referred to as hypoxia or asphyxia, or physical harm to the baby during delivery.
Signs which could indicate substandard medical care include:
- Delayed or prolonged stages of labor
- Baby’s position was wrong during delivery
- Instruments such as a vacuum extractor or forceps were utilized
- An emergency Caesarian delivery, or C-Section occurred
- An infection was discovered after birth
Shoulder dystocia is a complication that occurs during delivery process when one or both of the baby’s shoulders become stuck once the head of the baby has been delivered. Proper management by a health care provider must occur in this situation. If not managed properly, catastrophic injuries can result, including a brachial plexus injury.
Brachial plexus injury or palsy is the most common complications of shoulder dystocia. The brachial plexus is a bundle of nerves which allows electrical signals to flow from the brain to the spine to the shoulder, ann and hand. Substandard medical care can result in significant and permanent nerve damage which is often observed in a child with a paralyzed or flaccid arm.
There are risks inherent and accepted in any type of surgery. In this area, medical malpractice claims can occur pre-operatively, intra-operatively or in the post-operative room. Even when inherent risks to a surgery occur, such as perforation of a patient’s biliary tract during a cholecystectomy, a medical malpractice case can be pursued if a health care provider fails to timely recognize or properly treat the condition. Some of the most common surgical errors include:
- Post-surgical infection
- Operating on the wrong body part
- Surgical instruments, sponges or other foreign objects left behind
- Unnecessary surgery
There are different phases of anesthesia, pre-operatively, intra-operatively and postoperatively. Before the surgery, a patient must be properly assessed for risk factors. During the operation, positioning is important for the constant delivery of oxygen and prevention of injuries such as nerve compression. Medication must also be administered appropriately. Postoperatively, the patient is taken to the Post-Anesthesia Care Unit, or P ACU, where recovery occurs. Proper observation, management and treatment, if necessary, is mandatory for every patient.
The primary goals of anesthesia are airway maintenance and the constant delivery of oxygen. When a patient is deprived of oxygen, brain death, stroke, heart attack, organ failure or death can occur. Some examples of substandard anesthesia care include:
- Failure to take a thorough history in order to identify allergies and contraindications to medicine
- Improper administration of medication
- Improper placement of breathing tubes
- Failing to identify critical changes in the patient’s blood oxygenation levels, or 02, and blood pressure
- Improper positioning of the patient
- Discharging patients from the P ACU prior to fully recovering from the effects of anesthesia
Emergency Room Malpractice:
There is an expectation that you will be taken care of timely and properly when presenting to the emergency room. Whether that be by a physician, nurse or technician. Substandard medical care and treatment in the emergency room setting can be the result of miscommunication among the health care providers, failing to promptly address a patient’s signs and symptoms or by failing to properly evaluate a patient’s complaints. In the emergency room, the health care providers are trained to form what is commonly referred to as a differential diagnosis. This list includes likely causes of the patient’s medical condition with the most life threatening one at the top of the list. The medical providers are trained to rule out the most severe causes first before proceeding to the next one. Some examples of substandard emergency room care includes:
- Failure to treat heart attack or stroke
- Failure to treat a blood clot or pulmonary embolism
- Failure to diagnose and treat a medical condition
- Misinterpretation of a medical chart, laboratory results or prescriptions
- Medication errors such as contraindication or allergic reactions
Failure to Diagnose:
One of the most common failure to diagnose is cancer. With cancer, early detection and timely treatment is crucial. Physicians, nurses and other health care providers undergo schooling to identify signs and symptoms of certain medical conditions thereby resulting in additional tests being ordered or a refena1 to a specialist. There are also tests that can be ordered for a patient such as a mammogram or a co10noscopy to aid in the diagnosis and management of certain medical conditions. If not caught early, cancer or other medical condition can advance and proper medical treatment can become less effective thereby resulting in progression of the disease and even death.
Medication errors can result in devastating results, require more medical care and treatment, and lead to injury and even death.
Some examples of medication errors include:
- Failing to take a comprehensive history
- Administering too much or too little medication
- Failing to timely administer medication
Nurses have important responsibilities including, but not limited to, maintaining on-going communication with patients, communicating and monitoring vital signs.
Some examples of nursing errors include:
- Failure to timely and properly communicate a patient’s condition to a physician
- Failure to timely and properly monitor the patient
- Failure to administer medications timely or properly
Whether you or a loved one was injured due to the negligence of a hospital or health care provider, Boesen Law understands the frustration which can occur afterwards. At Boesen Law, we strive to obtain maximum and fair compensation for both economic and non-economic losses. We will discuss your case and help you decide on the best path to resolve your situation. The lawyers at Boesen Law know what steps to take in order to recover the compensation you deserve to pay for medical bills, lost wages and other types of damages.
A patient can recover damages for the harms or losses caused by medical malpractice. The recoverable damages are generally broken down into two categories: economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages typically include out-of-pocket expenses such as past and future medical expenses, and past and future lost wages. While non-economic damages typically include: pain and suffering; inconvenience, emotional stress, disfigurement, and impairment of the quality of life. In Colorado, a third category of damages includes physical impairment
An injured person’s spouse can also recover for loss of consortium damages which includes the adverse impact that the injury or death has on the marital relationship. To recover for loss of consortium, a plaintiff must prove that his or her spouse incurred injuries as a result of the defendant’s medical malpractice that concomitantly caused a loss of the affection, society, companionship, household services, aid or comfort to the party claiming loss of consortium