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Medical malpractice and the rise in medication errors

Medical malpractice lawsuits come in all shapes and sizes. Doctors can be found negligent for everything from prescription errors to surgical site infections. The important thing for patients to remember is that when they suffer injuries due to professional negligence they may be entitled compensation for their injuries through a medical malpractice lawsuit. Whenever a patient is injured, however, it is important to first seeking medical attention.

According to a number of recent news reports, prescription errors, resulting in very serious patient injuries and even death, are becoming increasingly common. Patients, particularly those receiving care for pain management, are increasingly becoming addicted to pain medication. In addition to the serious consequences associated with an addiction to a narcotic, some pain management patients are even paying the ultimate cost, their lives.

While not every patient injury is the result of medical malpractice or professional negligence, those that are should be taken very seriously. Doctors have an obligation to use caution and care to look out for the needs of their patients. This includes how and what a doctor chooses to prescribe for the management of pain. When a patient is injured due to a doctor's negligence, that patient may be entitled to damages for the injuries that they sustained.

In addition to medical expenses, most patients incur costs due to lost work and an inability to contribute to the family budget. If a patient has a legitimate medical malpractice claim they may be entitled to not only the cost of their medical care and lost wages, but also to compensation for pain and suffering. In many cases, jury's also award significant punitive damages.

Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch, "House Call: Know the early warning signs for ovarian cancer," Dr. Al Elbedary, March 20, 2013.

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