State Supreme Court Sides With Plaintiff and Allows Malpractice Claim to Proceed
In an opinion recently released by the Vermont Supreme Court, the court reversed the lower court’s decision to throw out a plaintiff’s case. The plaintiff chose to have the defendant, an eye doctor, perform a routine and elective cataract removal surgery in his eye, after which he alleged that the defendant committed medical malpractice by failing to properly diagnose and treat an infection in the plaintiff’s eye, causing him to suffer permanent and total blindness in one eye.
The supreme court disagreed with the lower state district court and ruled that the plaintiff’s proposed medical expert was sufficient under that state’s law for the case to proceed toward a jury trial. As a result of this ruling, the plaintiff will be allowed to push the case forward toward a settlement or jury award.
Plaintiff Decides to Have Eye Cataracts Removed and Winds Up Blind
Cataracts in the eyes can be painful and irritating, although their removal is usually considered an elective surgery, since the condition is not life- or lifestyle-threatening. The plaintiff in the case of Tillson v. Lane decided to have the defendant, an opthamologist, remove cataracts in one eye. After the surgery, the plaintiff noticed signs of infection and followed up with the doctor, who started treatment for an endophthalmitis infection, which the doctor believed was the diagnosis.
The defendant did not consult any other specialists or a retinologist before diagnosing and treating the plaintiff. The endophthalmitis treatments offered by the defendant did not slow the infection, and within 48 hours of surgery, the plaintiff was blind in the eye with the infection. The plaintiff filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against the doctor, alleging that he failed to provide adequate care by not prescribing a proactive and aggressive enough course of treatment to save the patient’s vision after the signs of infection arose.
Plaintiff’s Appeal Saves His Case
At the district court, the case was dismissed based on the defendant’s arguments that the plaintiff’s complaint only alleged that the defendant could have done a better job, and not that he was negligently responsible for the injuries to the plaintiff. The supreme court disagreed and found that a jury should decide whether the defendant was legally responsible for the injuries caused to the plaintiff.
Medical Malpractice in Post-Surgical Care
Doctors and hospitals are legally responsible to provide appropriate care before, during, and after a surgery, and failing to properly diagnose or treat a complication from a surgery that has already been performed can result in medical malpractice. In a Maryland medical malpractice lawsuit, doctors can be held accountable for their mistakes and lack of expertise, and with the right attorney and expert witnesses, the plaintiff can find an opportunity to get compensated for the doctor’s negligence
Do You Need Legal Advice?
If you or a loved one has been hurt by medical malpractice, don’t let doctors and hospitals, or the insurance companies that fight for them, avoid responsibility for their mistakes. The skilled Maryland malpractice attorneys at Wais, Vogelstein, Forman & Offutt have the experience that you want on your side when going up against insurance companies and their legal teams. Contact the Maryland malpractice attorneys at Wais, Vogelstein, Forman & Offutt today to discuss your case. We represent victims of medical malpractice and negligence nationwide. Call us at (410) 567-0800 or contact us online for a free consultation.