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Medical Malpractice

Medical Malpractice

At the Dinizulu Law Group, our lawyers represent medical malpractice victims against doctors, hospitals, dentists and other healthcare professionals who may have been negligent in the performance of their duties. Even though most medical care providers are highly qualified and competent, medical errors kill or permanently disable roughly 98,000 Americans every year. Our attorneys achieved a several medical malpractice awards in excess of several million dollars.

In order for Illinois attorneys to consider a medical malpractice claim, a person must have suffered an injury directly caused by substandard care, treatment, or evaluation by a doctor, hospital, or other healthcare provider. Examples of substandard care include, but are not limited to, leaving a sponge inside a person after surgery, operating on the wrong part of the body, giving a person the wrong prescription drug, birth trauma, brain trauma, failure to diagnose cancer, unnecessary operations, defective orthopedic implants, and difficulty with cosmetic implants.

If you or a loved one has been the victim of medical malpractice, our attorneys will discuss your case with you free of charge.

What is Medical
Malpractice?

We Provide Experts to Prove Your Medical Malpractice Case

Our Attorneys Help You
Determine if You
Have a Medical Malpractice Case

Emergency Room Failure to
Diagnose

Hospital Malpractice

Informed Consent and Patients

Illinois Anesthesiologist Errors and Over-Sedation

Failure to Diagnose Cancer

Cancer, Heart Disease, and
Infections Are Often Treatable
if Diagnosed Correctly Failure
to Diagnose Cancer

Illinois Birth Injuries Attorneys

Medical and healthcare providers can be sued for injuries caused by their negligence under the theory of medical malpractice, also referred to as medical negligence. Medical malpractice occurs when treatment falls below the standard of care generally accepted and established by the appropriate medical community.

In a medical malpractice case, our attorneys must prove that the medical provider did not meet the applicable standard of care in your or your loved one’s particular case in order to recover monetary damages. Doctors, dentists and other medical specialists, including hospitals and surgical physicians, have an obligation to conduct themselves professionally and not harm their patients. When they make mistakes, patients in their care can be seriously injured. Unfortunately, such errors are often avoidable and result from medical professionals who are inadequately trained or who are just too busy to be thorough.

A bad or undesired result doesn’t automatically mean that there was medical malpractice. In order for a doctor or hospital to be liable for medical malpractice, our lawyers must show that the medical services fell below the standard of care and therefore the persons providing these medical services were negligent. This usually means that the doctor did something which should not have been done, performed a procedure improperly or failed to do something which was medically necessary. Common instances of medical malpractice include wrong-site surgery, objects left inside patients, medication errors, and failure to diagnose a time sensitive illness before it is too late.

Medical negligence cases are sometimes complex. For this reason, our medical malpractice lawyers often consult with other law firms and expert witnesses to provide our clients with the best legal representation possible.

Illinois law requires our medical malpractice attorneys serving Chicago and elsewhere, to produce an expert who will confirm under oath that your medical provider did not meet the applicable standard of care required under the specific circumstances. At the Dinizulu Law Group, Ltd., we can help find the medical experts who have the expertise to make such a determination.

Please do not take a chance with your serious medical malpractice case. Call an experienced attorney – call the Dinizulu Law Group, Ltd. Based in Chicago and communities throughout Illinois, our attorneys have the experience and the resources to properly handle your medical malpractice case.

Medical Malpractice Cases Handled by Our Lawyers

  • Cerebral palsy
  • Delay in cancer diagnosis
  • Hospital malpractice
  • Injuries to babies at birth
  • Failure to diagnose fracture
  • Internal medicine
  • Performing tests incorrectly
  • Neonatal resuscitation
  • Orthopedics
  • Stroke management
  • Surgical procedures

  • We can help you find out if you have a meritorious medical malpractice case against a medical care provider. When a patient has a bad result or is left with a greater disability than before the medical treatment, there is a possibility that medical negligence caused the bad result and disability.
  • To determine whether or not you have a case, you need to consult with our medical malpractice lawyers serving Chicago and other areas in Illinois. We will supervise a focused interview with you, provide answers to you concerning general matters, and then decide whether further investigation is warranted.
  • Upon receiving your medical and hospital records, our experienced and knowledgeable medical malpractice attorneys and legal team will read and analyze the information recorded in your medical records. Even though many times the events relating to the medical negligence are not recorded in a patient’s records, a review of the records is still mandatory. After we have finished our review, if we believe it is appropriate, we will then consult with a physician who specializes in your illness or condition in an effort to determine whether there was medical malpractice and whether the injuries could have been prevented.
  • If it is determined that you or your loved one is the victim of medical negligence, our Chicago and other area, Illinois medical malpractice attorneys will work hard to obtain the full amount of compensation you are entitled to under the law.
  • Medical malpractice involves a very small percentage of doctors and hospitals. However, doctors can make mistakes and be careless just like all other people. In those cases where negligence causes serious injury, we help people recover money damages. If you have been the victim of medical malpractice, our Chicago area lawyers want to help. Contact the Dinizulu Law Group, Ltd. to schedule a free consultation.

When a medical professional fails to properly identify and diagnose a patient’s medical condition, it is known as a misdiagnosis. A doctor can be held liable for any damages that result from a misdiagnosis if the medical mistake was a result of negligence. In the emergency room, however, mistakes and misdiagnosis abound.

At the the Dinizulu Law Group, Ltd., our goal is to provide exceptional legal services to our clients. We strive to achieve the highest standard of excellence for the protection of individual rights through teamwork and the use of our considerable resources and experience. Whether we’re gathering evidence, giving advice, or talking with insurance companies, we are always your representative.

Emergency rooms, by definition, can be frantic places. They are bound to have a higher than normal rate of error. In fact, it has been estimated that 8 percent of heart attack victims are sent home with the wrong diagnosis. In 2001, there were 2,063 documented emergency room medication errors across the country, with almost 8 percent causing personal injury to the patient.

In June 2006, the Institute of Medicine concluded in three separate reports that emergency medical care in the United States is on the verge of collapse, with the nation’s declining number of emergency rooms dangerously overcrowded and often unable to provide the expertise needed to treat seriously ill people in a safe and efficient manner.

According to the reports, from 1993 to 2003, the U.S. population grew by 12 percent but emergency room visits grew by 27 percent, from 90 million to 114 million. In that same period, however, 425 emergency departments closed, along with about 700 hospitals and nearly 200,000 beds.

At the Dinizulu Law Group, Ltd., we want to do our part to put an end to emergency room misdiagnosis by informing the public of these important statistics and filing claims and suits against the medical practitioner at fault.

When patients first arrive to a hospital emergency department, they are first evaluated by triage personnel, usually a registered nurse. This evaluation will usually determine where and when the patient will be seen. Patients evaluated as having a minor injury or condition will likely be referred to the fast track or other similar area of the emergency department. If the triage nurse wrongly assesses the patient, there may be a significant delay in diagnosis and treatment. In the fast track section of the emergency room department, patients are typically seen on a first come, first served basis.

Patients with obvious severe or serious conditions are referred elsewhere in the emergency department, where they are more likely to be seen initially by a physician, although a physician assistant may also see patients in this area.

A misdiagnosis can occur at any state of the emergency room visit. It could result from an incorrect initial assessment, leading to a delay in diagnosis or treatment; a failure to recognize the condition bringing the patient to the emergency room; a failure to obtain appropriate diagnostic tests; a failure to obtain a consultation from an appropriate specialist or a failure to refer the patient to an appropriate specialist; or prescribing an incorrect medication.

Common diseases that are frequently misdiagnosed are:

  • Breast Cancer
  • Tuberculosis
  • Lung Cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Cervical Cancer
  • Ovarian Cancer
  • Testicular Cancer
  • Acute Myocardial Infarction (Heart Attack)
  • Strokes
  • Pulmonary Embolism
  • Bacterial Meningitis
  • Appendicitis

Many of these conditions are life threatening if the physician or other health care provider fails to consider them in making a diagnosis.

If you received the wrong diagnosis in the emergency room, contact the Dinizulu Law Group, Ltd. Our goal is to provide exceptional legal services to our clients. We strive to achieve the highest standard of excellence for the protection of individual rights through team work and the use of our considerable resources and experience.

Contact the Dinizulu Law Group, Ltd. at (312) 384-1920 for an initial consultation.

Hospital malpractice occurs when a doctor, nurse or other hospital staff member causes harm to patient by committing an act of negligence when caring for that patient. Hospital malpractice is a form of medical malpractice. Our attorneys have successfully represented dozens of hospital patients who did not receive proper and timely medical care during their hospitalization and were hurt by medical or nursing negligence.

Perhaps our medical malpractice attorneys can be of some help to you and answer your questions concerning whether you were the recipient of hospital malpractice by providing you with some information. If you have further questions or wish to consult with our attorneys, please contact us.

A hospital has a duty to use reasonable care in hiring and supervising its employees, including doctors, interns, residents, and such non-physician personnel as nurses, technicians and aides. A doctor, nurse or other healthcare provider at a hospital commits medical malpractice or negligence by failing to do something that a reasonably careful doctor, nurse or healthcare provider would do under the circumstances of a patient’s medical condition in the hospital. Just as in other walks of life, physicians, nurses and healthcare providers have a responsibility to conduct their practice of medicine in conformity with standards of hospital protocol and state regulations.

Unfortunately, sometimes bad things happen to good people. When a patient has a bad result or is left with a greater disability than before the medical treatment, there is a possibility that medical malpractice was a cause of the bad result and disability. There are no guarantees that a physician can make a person’s medical condition better or cure it. However, to determine whether or not you have a medical malpractice case, you need to consult with a lawyer.

Our medical malpractice lawyers serving Chicago and other Illinois areas are highly experienced in the prosecution of hospital malpractice. We will supervise a focused interview with you and other witnesses as to your medical care and treatment, answer questions you may have concerning general matters and then decide whether investigation into a claim of medical malpractice is warranted, which would then necessitate obtaining the patient’s medical/hospital records.

Upon receiving the records at our office, our medical malpractice attorneys and staff will index, read and analyze the information recorded in those records. Many times the medical malpractice and events relating to medical negligence are not recorded in the records but the review of the records is mandatory. In Illinois, it is also mandatory that our medical malpractice lawyers then consult with a licensed physician to discuss whether or not there is a basis or merit to a medical malpractice case and based on those discussions a lawsuit then can be started.

Please contact our medical malpractice lawyers. The Dinizulu Law Group, Ltd., will discuss your hospital negligence case at no cost to you.

What is informed consent?

Informed consent is the process by which fully informed patients can participate in choices about their healthcare. It originates from the legal and ethical right the patient has to direct what happens to her body and from the ethical duty of the physician to involve the patient in her health care.

What are the elements of full informed consent? 

The most important goal of informed consent is that patients have an opportunity to be an informed participant in his health care decisions. It is generally accepted that complete informed consent includes a discussion of the following elements:

  • the nature of the decision/procedure
  • reasonable alternatives to the proposed intervention
  • the relevant risks, benefits, and uncertainties related to each alternative
  • assessment of patient understanding
  • the acceptance of the intervention by the patient

In order for the patient’s consent to be valid, he must be considered competent to make the decision at hand and his consent must be voluntary. It is easy for coercive situations to arise in medicine. Patients often feel powerless and vulnerable. To encourage voluntariness, the physician can make clear to the patient that he is participating in a decision, not merely signing a form. With this understanding, the informed consent process should be seen as an invitation to him to participate in his health care decisions. The physician is also generally obligated to provide a recommendation and share her reasoning process with the patient. Comprehension on the part of the patient is equally as important as the information provided. Consequently, the discussion should be carried on in layperson’s terms and the patient’s understanding should be assessed along the way.

Basic consent entails letting the patient know what you would like to do and asking them if that will be all right. Basic consent is appropriate, for example, when drawing blood. Decisions that merit this sort of basic informed consent process require a low-level of patient involvement because there is a high-level of community consensus.

How much information is considered “adequate”?

How do you know when you have said enough about a certain decision? Most of the literature and law in this area suggest one of three approaches:

  • reasonable physician standard:what would a typical physician say about this intervention? This standard allows the physician to determine what information is appropriate to disclose. However, it is probably not enough, since most research in this area shows that the typical physician tells the patient very little. This standard is also generally considered inconsistent with the goals of informed consent as the focus is on the physician rather than on what the patient needs to know.
  • reasonable patient standard:what would the average patient need to know in order to be an informed participant in the decision? This standard focuses on considering what a patient would need to know in order to understand the decision at hand.
  • subjective standard:what would this patient need to know and understand in order to make an informed decision? This standard is the most challenging to incorporate into practice, since it requires tailoring information to each patient.

Most states have legislation or legal cases that determine the required standard for informed consent. The best approach to the question of how much information is enough is one that meets both your professional obligation to provide the best care and respects the patient as a person with the right to a voice in health care decisions.

What sorts of interventions require informed consent? 

Most health care institutions have policies that state which health interventions require a signed consent form. For example, surgery, anesthesia, and other invasive procedures are usually in this category. These signed forms are really the culmination of a dialogue required to foster the patient’s informed participation in the clinical decision.

For a wide range of decisions, written consent is neither required or needed, but some meaningful discussion is needed. For instance, a man contemplating having a prostate-specific antigen screen for prostate cancer should know the relevant arguments for and against this screening test, discussed in layman’s terms.

Informed consent is the process by which fully informed patients can participate in choices about their healthcare.

If a member of your family has been injured because of an uninformed consent. A member of our firm will be happy to discuss your situation. Contact the Dinizulu Law Group, Ltd. at (312) 384-1920 for an initial consultation.

The patient, having been put under general anesthetic, was unaware that the anesthesiologist had left the surgery – she did not realize that there was not even a nurse anesthetist present when her blood pressure began to fall. In fact, the patient never regained consciousness.

Anesthesia is often taken for granted. Patients are “put under” and children “put to sleep” before surgery. General anesthetic is administered to a patient who does not fully understand the increased risk of general over local anesthetic. Yet there are serious risks. A dosage formula based on a patient’s weight does not take into account the patient’s hyper-sensitivity to the drug. Without careful monitoring by an experienced and well-trained anesthesiologist the patient might experience dangerous, even fatal over-sedation. The patient might suffer post-intubation airway obstruction resulting in asphyxiation.

In some cases the anesthesiologist failed to monitor the patient’s respiration and heart rate, vital signs that warn of a potentially fatal reaction while it could still be reversed and result in permanent brain damage or death. In other cases the doctor responsible for administering anesthetic did not take the time to perform a thorough pre-operative exam and interview, including testing for allergies or adverse reactions.

If a member of your family has been seriously injured or has died during surgery, and you feel it may be a result of an anesthesia error you may have a medical malpractice claim. A member of our firm will be happy to discuss your situation. Contact the Dinizulu Law Group, Ltd. at (312) 384-1920 for an initial consultation.

Have you suffered from a doctor’s failure to diagnose cancer?

Our lawyers too often listen to a story of a family’s loss because of a doctor’s negligent failure to diagnose cancer, a bacterial infection, sepsis, a heart attack, or another treatable condition correctly or a delayed diagnosis that prevents effective treatment. This failure to provide a professional standard of care is medical malpractice and may entitle the victim and the victim’s family to a claim.

 

Delay in breast cancer diagnosis is a form of medical malpractice. Our lawyers with Dinizulu Law Group help those who have been harmed by this delay receive the compensation they are legally entitled to. These are the facts:

 

  • Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in women in the U.S.
  • 1 out of 9 women in the U.S. will develop breast cancer in their lifetime.
  • Breast cancer is the 2nd leading cause of death for all women and the leading cause of death in women ages 40-55.
  • About 85% of women whose breast cancer is detected before it has spread to the axillary nodes will survive at least 5 years.
  • Delay in diagnosis of breast cancer is the #1 basis for medical malpractice lawsuits in the U.S.

 

Once the diagnosis of cancer is made, the physician identifies the type of cancer by microscopic appearance of the cells and classifies the cancer according to how advanced it is. This is called staging. Cancer treatments vary widely depending upon the type of cancer and its stage.

 

The incidence of medical malpractice related to the diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer is alarming. Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in women in the United States and the second leading cause of death for all women. Nonetheless, too many women “fall through the cracks” when physicians negligently fail to diagnose their condition early on. The unacceptable result of this negligence is often the loss of treatment options and/or the loss of chance of survival.

 

Any undue delay in diagnosing or treating breast cancer can have devastating consequences and result in a medical malpractice claim. The probability that breast cancer will recur in a patient is directly related to the stage of the malignancy when initially diagnosed. If breast cancer is detected and addressed before the cancer has spread to any lymph nodes, the chances of survival are significantly better than otherwise.

 

Unfortunately, too often obvious warning signs are ignored and/or precautionary measures are not taken. If the diagnosis and treatment of cancer is delayed by the negligence of a health care provider, you may be the victim of medical malpractice and entitled to compensation for the harm caused by that delay. If a doctor misinterprets a test result or x-ray and fails to make an appropriate diagnosis, the proper treatment may never be prescribed, resulting in further injury or even death. Our medical malpractice lawyers are available to consult in these matters.

The following are among the more common forms of medical malpractice by physicians in diagnosing and/or treating breast cancer:

  • Failing to perform a breast examination (during a physical or while treating a patient for certain other reasons) which would have identified a clinically obvious tumor;
  • Failing to identify a palpable lump during a breast examination;
  • Mistaking a tumor for a breast infection;
  • Mistaking a tumor as benign and failing to recommend biopsy or removal;
  • Disregarding history of sharp pain in breast;
  • Disregarding signs of retraction;
  • Failing to determine the cause of nipple discharge;
  • Relying upon negative aspiration biopsy;
  • Relying upon mammography in lieu of physical breast examination;
  • Failing to order a mammogram;
  • Misinterpreting a mammogram;
  • Failing to react to mammogram findings;
  • Failing to order additional radiological tests;
  • Failing to order a biopsy;
  • Failing to order ultrasound when indicated; and,
  • Failing to follow-up with the patient.

Please keep in mind that the foregoing are merely examples, and are by no means intended as an exhaustive list of failures that may result in delayed diagnosis of breast cancer. Anyone who believes that a physician’s failure to timely diagnose breast cancer may have resulted in loss of treatment options and/or loss of chance of survival should contact our medical malpractice attorneys as soon as possible in order to preserve and protect their legal rights.

Delay in cancer diagnosis is a form of medical malpractice. As a result, it is necessary to obtain an experienced expert witness to proceed with your case. Our medical malpractice attorneys have the experience and the resources to pursue these types of cases and we are available to help you. Please contact us.

If you would like to discuss a physician’s misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose a condition with a lawyer. Please contact us and arrange a free consultation.

X-rays, MRI, scans; chemotherapy, radiation, lumpectomy, surgical removal of tumors, stroke and heart medications, antibiotics – we live in a time when science has provided the medical profession with remarkable tools to fight disease. However a failure to diagnose or a misdiagnosis of a condition because of the carelessness of an emergency room doctor, referring physician, or radiologist may delay treatment until it is too late. Science is only useful if employed correctly.

A patient may do everything recommended by the medical profession: have an uncomfortable diagnostic test such as a colonoscopy or mammogram on schedule; report unexplained bleeding or lumps to his or her doctor: and have recommended dental/oral exams, eye exams, and physicals. Yet if the radiologist or another physician misreads or ignores the x-rays or test results the result is failure to diagnose colon cancer, breast cancer, or another serious condition correctly. Now the cancer may metastasize, spreading throughout the patient’s body, a tumor may grow so it cannot be removed, and the patient faces an early death, permanent disfigurement, or much more rigorous treatment than otherwise would have been necessary.

If your family is suffering because of a medical professional’s failure to diagnose a condition, or a delayed diagnosis that rendered treatment ineffective we will do all we can to help. Contact the Dinizulu Law Group, Ltd. at (312) 384-1920 for an initial consultation.

How will you care for a child with a birth injury?

During pregnancy you may have done all you could to keep your child safe. Yet during labor, delivery, or post-partum care, your child was injured because of obstetric malpractice on the part of the physician, the delivery room nurse, the anesthesiologist, or another medical professional.

Now your family may be wondering how to provide nursing care for a child with a permanent disability or, if the birth injury was fatal, is dealing with grief over the loss of your baby. At Dinizulu Law Group, Ltd, our lawyers have extensive experience in helping families recover compensation.

If your family suffered a loss because of a preventable birth injury, please contact us for a free consultation.

Why was your baby injured during birth?

A common cause of birth injuries is failure of the ob-gyn to perform a cesarean (c-section), or failure to perform it soon enough to prevent a birth injury during childbirth despite fetal monitor readings suggesting fetal distress, a breach delivery, or indications during the pregnancy that the baby’s head was too large for the birth canal.

As a result of unnecessarily prolonged labor because of failure to perform a c-section the baby may suffer oxygen deprivation. The respiratory distress at birth may result in cerebral palsy, a permanent form of brain damage. The cerebral palsy may have been caused by a lack of oxygen during unnecessarily prolonged labor or because of a uterine rupture, an instrumental delivery with improper use of vacuum extraction, pre-eclampsia, toxemia, low blood pressure, or a treatable infection in the mother.

Erb’s palsy, an obstetrical brachial plexus injury (shoulder injury during birth) can result in permanent disability. Obstetrical malpractice causing Erb’s palsy includes failure to note warning signs before birth, including fetal macrosomia, maternal weight gain, and breech birth. A forceps injury or suction can also result in Erb’s palsy.

Some brachial plexus injuries can be repaired. A physician’s failure to diagnose an injury can, however, delay treatment until the injury is permanent.

The Costs of a Permanent Birth Injury

If your infant died during birth, you pay the greatest possible cost in your grief. A wrongful death claim may result in changes that prevent another family from experiencing the same tragedy. If your child lived you may now be faced with an impossible task: providing for a child with a catastrophic injury that requires a lifetime of nursing care. As lawyers with extensive experience in birth injury claims, we will help your family determine the full value of your claim and work relentlessly to recover the damages you need to take care of your child and your family.

Contact the Dinizulu Law Group, Ltd., at (312) 384-1920 for an initial consultation.

 

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