Oklahoma City Medical Malpractice Lawyers
Fact checked by Clayton Hasbrook J.D. | Updated on June 11, 2020
In the United States, medical malpractice law derives from English common law. It has been slowly adapted and modified by courts through time.
The law states that the injured party must prove the following:
- That there was a professional duty owed to the patient
- The profession breached their duty of care
- The breach was the cause of the injury
- Damages resulted
In short, you must demonstrate that physicians acted negligently in the provision of care.
Hasbrook & Hasbrook has extensive experience fighting medical malpractice lawsuits and winning compensation for clients. Our team of medical malpractice lawyers is here to assist you in getting the money you deserve. Please note that under Oklahoma law, you have two years to make a medical malpractice claim.
Common Types Of Medical Malpractice In Oklahoma City
Medical malpractice lawsuits seek to provide injured patients with restitution for a wide variety of instances in which physicians or other medical professionals acted negligently.
The role of the FDA is to ensure that drug companies cannot release medications to market that do more harm than good. Unfortunately, the system doesn’t always work as intended, and patients wind up receiving pharmaceutical compounds that have not been through adequate testing or clinical trials.
FDA approval does not mean that a drug is wholly safe. The federal agency recognizes shortcomings in its procedures and accepts that some potentially hazardous medications can enter circulation.
Data from the Journal of the American Medical Association found that around a third of prescription drugs approved by the FDA between 2001 and 2012 had side effects that were not accounted for before they hit the market. Furthermore, the FDA estimates that prescription drug incidents account for around 1.6 million injuries annually. There are 358 medical malpractice cases, dockets, and filings on record at Oklahoma district courts since 2002 [Updated June 2020].
Defective Medical Devices
There is sometimes an overlap in tort law between defective product personal injury and medical malpractice. Nowhere is this clearer than in the case of defective medical devices. According to figures from the FDA, medical devices are the cause of upwards of 200,000 injuries across the US annually.
Defective medical devices can lead to severe injuries. Faulty implantable items such as defibrillators and replacement knees require surgery to remove, leading to unnecessary harm. Metal-on-metal hip replacements are believed to be a leading cause of metallosis – metal poisoning that damages bone and muscle tissue around the artificial joint. And hernia meshes can lead to bowel infections and perforations.
The FDA estimates that between 2008 and 2017, hip replacements caused 103,104 injuries, surgical mesh caused 60,795 injuries, and defibrillators caused 59,457 injuries.
Emergency Room Errors
Emergency rooms are hectic environments in which medical professionals have to work fast to save patients. Despite pressures on staff, Oklahoma state law still holds doctors and nurses to account. If a medic makes an error that leads to personal injury, you may have grounds to file for compensation.
A new study published in De Gruyter’s Journal Diagnosis suggests that 45 percent of emergency room errors relate to “poor information processing,” in which ER staff failed to assess a patient’s needs adequately. Thirty-one percent of mistakes have to do with failing to verify whether information has been gathered, and 6 percent came from inadequate knowledge or training according to the report. The most frequent individual errors were misdiagnosis and misunderstanding of the significance of findings, each accounting for 13 percent of total mistakes.
Five-year cancer survival is improving over time in Oklahoma, consistent with national trends, according to a paper published in the Journal of the Oklahoma State Medical Association. Even so, cancer misdiagnosis remains a significant problem in the local area.
Cancer misdiagnosis takes one of three forms:
- Failing to diagnose the condition. This occurs when a physician determines that the patient is cancer-free, even though they do have cancer.
- Incorrectly diagnosing the condition. This occurs when the patient has cancer, but the doctor diagnoses a different condition.
- Wrongly diagnosing cancer. This happens when the doctor diagnoses cancer when the patient does not have the disease.
In 2018, there were 19,030 new cancer cases in Oklahoma, according to a report by the American Cancer Society. But the organization cautions about the problem of overdiagnosis: treating suspected cancer lesions that would never lead to disease. Data from the group suggests around 5 to 30 percent of women who undergo mammograms receive unnecessary treatment. Excessive thyroid cancer screening may also lie behind increasing rates of diagnosis and treatment.
Dental malpractice encompasses injuries caused by dental professionals, including faulty prosthetics (crowns, bridges, fillings, implants), faulty root canal, damaged teeth, lip injuries, and gum injuries. It also encompasses a variety of cancers associated with dental damage.
Get A Medical Malpractice Lawyer In Oklahoma City
If you believe that you may have received medical care that constitutes malpractice, then get in touch with our team today. We will evaluate your medical malpractice case and then talk to you about the next steps that you can take. The initial consultation is an opportunity for you to ask questions and get a sense of how much compensation you may be owed. Currently, statute caps non-economic damages at $350,000. However, there is no limit or cap for economic damages for which you can claim. You may also be able to claim additional punitive damages, up to a maximum of $100,000.
Campbell, J., Gandhi, K., Pate, A., Janitz, A., Anderson, A., Kinnard, R. and Ding, K., 2016. Five-Year cancer survival rates in Oklahoma from 1997 to 2008. The Journal of the Oklahoma State Medical Association, 109(7-8), p.318.