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Ann Arbor Medical Malpractice Law Blog

How wrongful death lawsuits work in Michigan

When a loved one dies due to another person's negligence, a wrongful death lawsuit may be appropriate. While this type of claim has a lot in common with personal injury cases, some aspects may differ significantly.

While no amount of money can make up for what happened, filing a claim may be the only way to hold responsible the people or companies whose negligence went so far as to cause a person's death. When the victim left behind dependent family members, pursuing this claim can be a matter of vital importance.

Car accident injuries and their impact

Many people assume that most of the car accidents they see on the roads in Michigan are minor fender benders. Little do they realize that many of those accidents involve people who sustained severe and catastrophic injuries. As common as motor vehicle wrecks are, it is important for motorists to become familiar with the types of injuries they could sustain and how they can impact their lives. 

Here is a brief overview on some of the injuries that car accident victims may incur. 

When should you seek a second opinion?

Major medical diagnoses are life-changing events, which is why it can be surprising when people discover how rare it actually is to seek out a second opinion following the announcement of such a diagnosis-or the exclusion of it. In fact, there was a Gallup survey of Americans in the mid-2000s that covered 5,000 contributors and found that just about half reported never seeking a second opinion at all.

The dangers of using social media when fighting a medical malpractice case

Every person should feel confident in their doctor's ability to treat them effectively. If you're suffering from any type of ailment, the first thing you do is see a doctor. So what happens when your doctor makes an error that causes harm to you?

Recent tragedy highlights Michigan's noneconomic damages cap

Can you put a dollar value on pain and suffering? Michigan law does.

As we've discussed before, Michigan law places a cap on noneconomic damages in medical malpractice cases. The law defines "noneconomic damages" to include, among other things, pain, suffering, physical impairment and loss of society and companionship. About half of the states have similar caps, a common component of tort reform.

Nursing home abuse: More than physical

While your elderly loved one may not show physical signs of abuse, there is a more sinister type of abuse happening in care facilities and nursing homes: emotional abuse. It is perhaps the most common type of abuse that happens to the elderly.

The problem is that because it leaves no visual mark it can be difficult to identify. But knowing what emotional abuse entails and the signs of this abuse are the first steps in putting a stop to it.

Who can you sue for medical malpractice?

A medical malpractice claim is not necessarily against your doctor or only against the doctor. A nurse can commit malpractice. The hospital itself or manufacturers of medical products could be liable. Or all of the above. It's not about a scattergun approach. It's about identifying the medical professionals or entities who contributed to your family's tragedy and holding them accountable.

According to a recent survey of doctors by Medscape, it's rare (just 12 percent of the time) that the treating physician or surgeon is the only party named in a lawsuit. More often, there are multiple parties involved, each with their own roles (and defenses). Who else might you end up suing for malpractice, besides the primary care doctor or specialist?

Medical malpractice suit in botched foot implant surgery

Degenerative diseases can leave Ann Arbor patients with significant, life-altering health issues. When the bones and joints are affected, mobility can be severely limited and pain may be constant.

This was the case with a patient in a nearby Midwestern state who sought treatment for pain associated with flat feet in 2007. He sought treatment from a local podiatrist and eventually underwent surgery for his condition. The surgeon implanted replacement joints in each of the patient's feet.

What is failure to diagnose and how are victims protected?

Failure to diagnose is serious for any victim of medical malpractice. A medical mistake such as a failure to diagnose can result in the wrong treatment, failed treatment or delayed treatment which can lead to a worsened medical condition or even death in some circumstances. Because of the serious harm that can be caused by a failure to diagnose, medical malpractice claim options may be available in a number of circumstances.

Victims of medical malpractice may suffer a variety of damages as a result of a medical mistake such as a failure to diagnose. Both incorrect treatment and delayed treatment may cause harm to the victim of medical malpractice. Erroneous treatment may lead to harm the victim did not previously suffer from and delayed treatment may lead to a worsened condition. The condition that is actually present may worsen when allowed to continue untreated. Erroneous treatment usually results from misdiagnosis, however, a medical condition can also be correctly diagnosed but not properly treated leading to harm to the victim.

Federal agency statistics on nursing home neglect

Ann Arbor residents have likely heard any number of the many stories that regularly circulate in the media about the effects of the aging Boomer Generation. The impact on Social Security as more age out of the work force, for example; the effect on health care costs as Boomers live longer and require more intensive care.

There is also another, much more disturbing phenomenon which we can expect to hear about as more and more elders move into nursing homes and assisted living facilities. That is nursing home neglect and abuse. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' website provides some statistics which can help our Ann Arbor readers form a clearer picture of the problem.

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Our partners are available as local counsel to out-of-state law firms in Michigan medical malpractice and personal injury litigation.Inquiries and referrals welcome.

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Goethel Engelhardt, PLLC
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Ann Arbor, MI 48103

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