Washington Stroke Malpractice Lawyers
Was Your Treatment Delayed by the Wrong Diagnosis?
Strokes are the fifth leading cause of death in America. And every doctor who works in an emergency room or urgent care should recognize common stroke symptoms. Sadly, more than 12 percent of strokes are misdiagnosed, according to the National Institute of Health (NIH). This has tragic consequences for thousands of Americans every year.
When a stroke is misdiagnosed, or when the correct diagnosis is delayed, it often results in needless suffering and death. Scientists have developed effective treatments that can dramatically reduce the harm caused by a stroke, but these remedies must be administered quickly to make a difference.
In many cases, patients who are suffering from a stroke are sent home or told to wait in the lobby as their symptoms grow worse. This usually happens because doctors fail to perform basic medical tests.
If you or a loved one was injured because your stroke wasn’t diagnosed in time, contact the experienced trial attorneys at Leventhal Puga Braley P.C. Our firm has won record-breaking settlements for our clients.
Call (877) 433-3906 to learn more today.
How Doctors Misdiagnose Strokes
We commonly refer to cardiac arrest as a heart attack, and a stroke can be accurately described as a brain attack. A stroke is caused by a reduction or interruption of blood flow to the brain. This prevents a region of the patient’s brain from receiving oxygen, often resulting in permanent injury.
The two most common types of strokes are hemorrhagic and ischemic strokes. A hemorrhagic stroke occurs when a blood vessel in the brain ruptures, and an ischemic stroke is usually caused by a blood clot that blocks the flow of blood.
In its early stages, a stroke may cause confusion, a lack of balance, and a serious headache. When a patient comes to the doctor’s office or an emergency room with these symptoms, the doctor should immediately order a head CT scan or an MRI.
In fact, the American Stroke Association uses the acronym F.A.S.T. to help patients recognize and get stroke treatment: The F is facial drooping, A=arm weakness, S=speech problems, T=time to call for help.
Doctors often fail to request diagnostic imaging for a patient who’s suffering a stroke because they assume the condition isn’t really serious. In an alarming number of cases, doctors tell the patient to go home and take some medication to relieve their headache.
When a doctor misdiagnoses a stroke, it’s often because they assume the patient is actually suffering from one of the following issues:
- A migraine
- Seizure disorder
- Side effects from medication
- High or low blood sugar caused by diabetes
Types of Negligence That Cause Delayed Stroke Treatment
Besides misdiagnosis, there are other types of medical negligence that may cause a stroke patient to receive substandard care. For example, the patient’s test results might be inaccurately interpreted. Or treatment may be delayed because the hospital has flawed patient screening protocols.
Medical errors that cause catastrophic treatment delays for stroke patients include:
- Laboratory errors
- Equipment failure
- Improper training
- Inadequate staffing
- Failure to perform a thorough physical examination
- Failure to consider the patient’s medical history
What Is Medical Malpractice?
Doctors and other health care providers are required to uphold the standard of care. Medical malpractice occurs when a medical professional fails to follow recommended treatment practices. To prove malpractice, your lawyer will have to demonstrate that a reasonably qualified professional would not have made the same mistake under similar conditions.
A healthcare professional whose negligence contributed to a delayed diagnosis may be held liable for medical malpractice. This may include:
- Laboratory technicians
- Hospital administrators
Consequences of Delayed Stroke Treatment
A stroke may have severe medical consequences, and the impact can be compounded by delayed treatment. Common stroke symptoms include:
- Weakness or paralysis on one side of the body
- Difficulty holding or gripping objects
- Difficulty concentrating
- Slurred speech
- Vision problems
- Difficulty swallowing
- Loss of bowel or bladder control
- Reduced movement
- Reduced depth perception
- Memory problems
- Inability to understand words
How Your Washington Malpractice Attorney Can Help
If you or a loved one was harmed by delayed stroke treatment, the Washington medical malpractice attorneys at Leventhal Puga Braley P.C. will conduct a thorough investigation to find out what happened. Then we’ll file a claim against anyone whose negligence contributed to you or your loved one’s injuries.
A Washington medical malpractice claim for injuries caused by delayed stroke treatment will include the following types of damages:
- Medical expenses
- Lost income
- Reduced earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Medical devices
- Emotional anguish
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Wrongful death
Schedule a Free Consultation Today
At Leventhal Puga Braley P.C., we can file a claim to help you get the money you need to make things better after someone has hurt you.
Call (877) 433-3906 to schedule your consultation today. At Leventhal Puga Braley P.C., we never stop fighting for our clients.
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