What Medical Malpractice Can Look Like in the State of Illinois

What Medical Malpractice Can Look Like in the State of Illinois

Medical professionals are legally required to provide the minimum standard of care to all of their patients, but not all healthcare providers meet this standard. Through negligence— whether intentional or unintentional— not providing adequate care can cause further health problems for the patient, and this is known as medical malpractice. A medical malpractice lawsuit can be brought against any type of healthcare provider in a medical setting, as well as against an entire medical institution. Here’s what medical malpractice can look like in the state of Illinois.

Anesthesia, Surgical, and Other Hospital Errors

When most people think of medical malpractice, they think of something going wrong during a hospital stay— and with good reason. Most medical malpractice lawsuits are due to an error during a hospital stay. This includes negligence by doctors, nurses, technicians, and other healthcare providers. Negligence can even happen in emergency rooms when doctors fail to make quick judgments that can save a patient’s life. Some of the most common types of hospital errors include:

  • Patient falls
  • Medication errors
  • Hospital-acquired infections (e.g., sepsis)

Surgical and anesthesia mistakes are also a part of hospital errors. Surgical mistakes can include cutting an organ during an operation, operating on the wrong organ, failing to perform a procedure correctly, or even operating on the wrong patient. These mistakes often result in more harm, such as internal bleeding, paralysis, or even death. Anesthesia errors include giving the patient too much (the patient can die during surgery) or too little (the patient can wake up during surgery.

Birth Injuries

Birth injuries are a specific type of hospital injury that occurs during the labor and delivery process, and either/both the child and mother are injured due to negligence. More often than not, the infant is the one who receives an injury during the birthing process and this can result in life-long problems. Some of the most common birth injuries that affect infants include:

  • Shoulder dystocia: damage to the shoulders as a result of being lodged in the birth canal.
  • Facial nerve palsy: loss of voluntary muscle movement in the face due to too much pressure being placed on the face.
  • Brain trauma: various disabilities linked to sufficient oxygen being cut off from the infant for too long.
  • Brachial plexus: damage to the nerves that begin at the spinal cord and radiates to the nerves.

Dental Malpractice

Because dentistry is separate from medicine, dental malpractice is a different form of medical malpractice. However, it encompasses many of the same elements as general medical malpractice, including:

  • Leaving a foreign body in gums/teeth
  • Failure to diagnose/treat
  • Anesthesia and surgical errors

Misdiagnosis, Failure to Diagnose, Delayed Diagnosis, and Diagnostic Errors

Failure to diagnose a patient’s ailment is one of the most common types of medical malpractice, and it includes both misdiagnosis and diagnostic errors (misreading a diagnostic test). It can also lead to a delayed diagnosis or no diagnosis at all. Serious medical conditions, such as cancer, heart disease, brain damage, sepsis, loss of a limb, and other illnesses can go undiagnosed for a long time. Overall, this can be considered negligent treatment and wrongful death can result from such malpractice.

Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect

Like dentistry, nursing home malpractice is a specific type of malpractice. Nursing homes are assisted living facilities that provide medical care to its patients. Because of this, patients in nursing homes are likley to be victims of medication errors— both unintentional and intentional. Unintentional medication errors include staff members mistakenly giving patients the wrong medication, too much/too little of the correct medication, or giving medication incorrectly. Intentional medication errors may include giving patients medications intending to make them sleep or harm them.

No matter where medical malpractice occurs, healthcare professionals are held responsible for not providing the minimum standards of care to their patients. An experienced attorney can be a legal advocate for anyone pursuing justice. They can help you determine if medical malpractice occured, as well as secure compensation for additional medical treatment, loss of quality of life, and even wrongful death.

Injuries from medical malpractice can result in lifelong health complications and even death in some cases. Healthcare professionals and institutions should be held accountable for their negligent actions and victims should receive compensation for their injuries or a loved one’s death. Unfortunatley, medical malpractice is fairly common across the entire U.S., so it’s important to find an experienced attorney in your area to help you with your case.

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