Can I Sue a Hospital for a Stroke Misdiagnosis?
A stroke occurs when the blood supply to part of the brain is interrupted or reduced. This denies the brain tissues of vital oxygen. Within a few minutes of a stroke, brain tissues begin to die. A stroke can have devastating effects on a person’s health and functions.
With early diagnosis and treatment, people may be able to resume a normal way of life after a stroke. Unfortunately, strokes may be misdiagnosed. The misdiagnosis lawyers from Younker Hyde Macfarlane, PLLC, work with individuals in the Salt Lake City, Utah, area to determine if they can sue a hospital for stroke misdiagnosis, based on the details of their situation.
Mistaking Stroke Symptoms
A stroke is a medical emergency and its effects are often immediate and obvious. Some of the most common symptoms of a stroke include:
- Paralysis or numbness of the face, arm, or leg
- Trouble speaking or understanding speech
- Difficulty seeing from one or both eyes
- Trouble walking
- Sudden, severe headache (may be accompanied by dizziness or vomiting)
Unfortunately, despite a stroke’s profound effect on neurological functions, it is not unheard of for a stroke to be misdiagnosed. This is partially due to the fact that a stroke is usually associated with older individuals (even though it can occur in younger patients) and partially because there are other conditions that mimic the symptoms of a stroke. A stroke may be mistaken for benign conditions, such as an inner ear infection or migraine, or more serious conditions, such as high blood pressure, epilepsy, or multiple sclerosis.
Proving Negligence Related to Misdiagnosis
To sue a hospital for misdiagnosis of a stroke, the patient needs to be able to demonstrate that the misdiagnosis was a result of neglect. This can be demonstrated by showing that the misdiagnosis was the result of an error such as:
- Failure to review the patient’s medical history
- Failure to order appropriate tests
- Failure to consider a stroke as a possible diagnosis (often because of the patient’s age)
- Misreading of test results
Establishing the level of care that a patient should have received is another key aspect of proving medical neglect. Essentially, it must be shown that treating medical personnel failed to deliver care that met up to the accepted standard, or that which would have been provided by other similarly trained medical professionals who were presented with the same symptoms. Our Salt Lake City misdiagnosis lawyers collect expert testimony from medical professionals in the field to solidify a claim of medical malpractice.
Do I Need An Attorney?
Individuals who suffer medical, emotional, or financial damages as a result of misdiagnosis may wonder if they can sue a negligent hospital without hiring an attorney. We strongly advise against that. Hospitals have large and experienced legal teams on their side who are ready to protect the financial interests of the hospital. Without an attorney who clearly understands the laws regarding medical malpractice, patients are unlikely to collect the maximum compensation they are due for misdiagnosis damages.
If you or a loved one has suffered long-term damages following the misdiagnosis of a stroke, the lawyers at Younker Hyde Macfarlane, PLLC, can help you hold negligent medical professionals accountable for your losses. To discuss the details of your case and determine if you have grounds for a medical malpractice claim, send us a message online or call our Salt Lake City law firm at (801) 335-6467.