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Ann Arbor Medical Malpractice Law Blog

What should I do after a car accident?

If a Michigan resident has ever been involved in an accident, then they understand the stress. We are all aware of car accidents and their prevalence, but we rarely, if ever, think that they could happen to us. And, when they do, we often find ourselves unsure of what to do in the immediate aftermath of a crash.

There are a number of steps one can take after a wreck to protect their legal interests. The first thing to do is remain on the scene and call for medical assistance, if needed. Then, call the police to have the accident properly documented. In addition, if able, try to take pictures of any damage or injuries. It is also important to talk to witnesses and gather their contact information, as their accounts may be important to any potential legal case.

Traumatic brain injury can have profound impact

There are a whole host of injuries that an individual can suffer when involved in a car accident. Many Michigan residents are fortunate enough to escape these wrecks with minor injuries that heal in a matter of days and which have minimal, if any, effect on their daily lives. Other individuals, though, are not so fortunate. In fact, some of these accident victims are left with harm that is so severe that it completely disrupts their lives with little hope of recovering the life they once enjoyed.

Previously on the blog we discussed spinal cord injuries and their debilitating effect, but traumatic brain injuries can be just as damaging to sufferers. While relatively minor brain injuries can result in sleeping troubles, dizziness, fatigue, light sensitivity and difficulties related to memory and concentration, serious traumatic brain injuries can have much more long-term consequences.

5 steps of a wrongful death lawsuit

If one of your family members dies in a serious accident, you feel devastated. There is nothing that will take the pain away. However, there is a legal option for obtaining financial compensation if a negligent person caused the accident.

Losing a loved one not only comes with emotional turmoil, but it can hit you with unexpected expenses. Here is a guide to filing a wrongful death lawsuit so you can receive damages. 

Medical malpractice claim results in large recovery

Michigan residents who are unexpectedly hit with a debilitating medical condition expect to be quickly diagnosed and effectively treated by the medical professional they choose to see. While most doctors and nurses carry out their duties in a competent fashion, others fail to do so. This, in turn, puts innocent and unsuspecting patients at risk of suffering serious harm. Those who fall victim to doctor negligence can be shocked by the extent of their damages. Depending on the medical expenses, pain and suffering and lost wages involved, the losses can be enormous.

Just ask one 17-year-old and her family who recently recovered $135 million in a medical malpractice lawsuit. The award comes seven years after the girl underwent a spinal operation where hardware was utilized to alleviate her scoliosis. However, instead of easing the tension on her spine, the hardware cause pain and further injury. Instead of working to remedy the condition though, her doctor went on vacation, while she became paralyzed and incontinent.

Texting and driving still far too common

If a Michigander were to get in their car and drive for a half an hour, the chances are high that they would encounter multiple individuals who have taken their eyes off of the road to look at their cell phone. Sadly, this is the new reality. Motorists are often distracted by their cell phones, thereby putting innocent and unsuspecting motorists at risk of being involved in a car accident.

The problem is not getting any better, either. Despite public service initiatives and laws that seek to curtail texting and driving, the fact of the matter is that cell phone usage while driving seems to be on the increase. In fact, more than a third of all drivers have admitted to reading or sending a text message while driving within the last month despite 84 percent of them recognizing the dangers of doing so. This is troubling for a number of reasons, including the fact that those who use a cell phone while driving are just as impaired as someone with a BAC of 0.08 percent. Also, texting and driving can increase one's chances of being involved in an accident by more than 500 percent.

3 of the most common anesthesia errors

Undergoing a major medical procedure is a stressful situation, but in most cases, you will be unconscious as the surgery happens. This, of course, is dependent upon the correct administration of anesthesia prior to your operation. Unfortunately, anesthesia errors are some of the most common culprits of medical malpractice, and a simple mistake can easily become deadly.

The following are three of the most common errors made when patients undergo anesthesia. If you suspect that you have been a victim of one of these medical mistakes, you should understand your rights and the legal recourse that is available to you. 

We aggressively negotiate and litigate medical malpractice claims

Although Michigan doctors take an oath promising to do their patients no harm, far too often, medical mistakes lead to undeserved and completely avoidable injuries. Last week, we discussed how this can occur when a medical professional fails to obtain informed consent before proceeding with a course of treatment, but that is merely one of the many ways a doctor or hospital can be negligent. A medical condition may be misdiagnosed or never diagnosed, and surgical errors can occur.

Tragically, the victims of this negligence are often subjected to extensive losses. These losses can be physical in nature, such as suffering pain, the limited use of a limb or one's mind and even permanent disfigurement. In addition, a victim may suffer emotional damages due to knowing how the incident will affect their lives, as well as the fear associated with reliving the incident. Lastly, a victim can suffer extensive financial losses, usually in the form of medical expenses and lost wages. If left unaddressed, these damages can ruin an individual's life.

Informed consent and medical malpractice

Going to a Michigan doctor should not be a scary endeavor. After all, these medical professionals have spent years, sometimes, even decades, educating themselves and gaining experience in their particular field. Although most medical professionals are able to provide their patients with competent, safe care, sometimes, they make errors that can be catastrophic for patients.

One way that this can occur is if a doctor fails to obtain informed consent and subsequently engages in unauthorized treatment. Consent obtained by a doctor is considered informed, if it advises a patient about his or her medical condition, the options available to him or her with regard to treatment, the risks that arise with those forms of treatment and the prognosis. It is worth mentioning that for consent to be considered informed, this information must be conveyed in a way that the patient understands.

3 examples of OB/GYN malpractice

Receiving any kind of medical care is a personal experience, but few fields require the level of care and discretion demanded of obstetricians and gynecologists. Doctors in the OB/GYN field must deal with intimate matters of women's health and pregnancy, so it is no wonder that professionals in this field are more susceptible to medical malpractice lawsuits than other medical professionals.

According to Perinatal Resources Inc., OB/GYN doctors and surgeons are the most likely to face medical malpractice suits. There are many potential reasons someone may file such a suit. The following are some of the most common examples of OB/GYN medical malpractice.

Truck stopping distances can increase risk of car accidents

If Michiganders get nervous when they drive near semi-trucks, they are not alone. These big rigs can be intimidating, primarily because their massive size can cause immense devastation when they are involved in an accident. Due to the risk associated with these vehicles, truckers obtain education and training to better prepare them to drive them safely. Unfortunately, some of the finer points of safe driving are often forgotten.

Amongst them is the fact that semi-trucks take significantly longer to come to a safe stop. The reason for this is mere weight of the vehicle. Whereas a passenger vehicle may weigh between 3,000 and 4,000 pounds, a semi-truck can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds. This means that a car traveling at 40 miles per hour will need 124 feet to safely come to a stop. A semi-truck traveling at the same speed will need 169 feet. When traveling at 65 miles per hour, a car will take 316 feet to stop compared to 525 feet for a semi-truck. That's nearly the length of a football field in difference.

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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
3049 Miller Road
Ann Arbor, MI 48103

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