Is it Legal to sue a Hospital for the Death of My Spouse due to an Anesthesia Mistake During Surgery?
Yes. Suing a hospital or doctor for an error in administering anesthesia is like any other medical malpractice claim. And, sadly, since anesthesia errors can lead to very serious medical consequences, such as permanent brain damage, partial or complete paralysis, persistent vegetative state, and even death; pursuing compensation following an anesthesia error in Maryland is completely within your rights.
General anesthesia is a nearly universal requirement for most any major surgical procedure. By administering one or more drugs, doctors are able to render a patient unconscious or semi-conscious so that he or she does not feel any pain. Although the use of general anesthesia is typically safe when performed correctly, there are numerous instances of anesthesia-related medical errors that occur each year in this state. Common types of anesthesia mistakes can include the following:
- Dosage errors
- Delayed delivery of anesthesia
- Failure to intubate
- Injuries caused by the intubation process
- Failure to correctly monitor the patient’s vital signs
- Failure to recognize anesthesia-related complications
- Improper use of equipment during surgical procedures
If an anesthesia-related medical error could have been prevented, those responsible for the patient’s injuries or death should be held accountable. The potential defendants in an anesthesia error lawsuit could include the anesthesiologist the nurse anesthetist, or the entire anesthesia team. In fact, any medical professional involved in the administration of anesthesia during surgery may be held liable for a victim’s injuries or death.
As with all medical malpractice cases, the bringing of a Maryland personal injury or wrongful death claim generally occurs when the conduct of a healthcare professional results in harm to a patient, usually as a result of some deviation from the commonly accepted standards of care within his or her profession. To state it another way, doctors and nurses owe their patients “a duty to act in a manner consistent with how other healthcare providers in the same specialty would act under the same circumstances.”
Failure of a healthcare provider to meet this accepted level of care could most certainly be cause for a victim to bring a personal injury claim against a medical professional; or for the family members of a deceased patient to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
Patients who have been seriously injured by an anesthesia error may be able to seek both economic and non-economic damages for any harm he or she may have been subjected to. When it comes to economic damages, this may include compensation for “objectively verifiable” monetary losses — such as medical bills received in the past, present or the future; cost of attendant care, such as nursing services or prescription drugs; and any lost income arising from the injuries sustained by the victim as a result of the anesthesia error.
Victims and their families can also claim non-economic damages, which would include intangibles such as pain and suffering, and loss of consortium, as well as compensation for the injury itself — this includes malpractice resulting in disfigurement, scarring and other non-monetary losses.
In cases of medical negligence resulting in death, family members have the right to file a wrongful death claim on behalf of the victim against any responsible party(s). If you have lost a child, parent or spouse to an anesthesia-related medical error, you should speak with a qualified Maryland personal injury attorney. The experts at Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC, understand the legal statutes that govern medical malpractice lawsuits and can assist you in filing a personal injury or wrongful death claim.
Here in Maryland, there are very specific rules that cover the filing of wrongful death claims. Depending on the circumstances, state law allows a surviving spouse to file such a claim, as well as surviving parents and surviving children (even if that individual(s) is no longer a minor). Wrongful death claims are meant to compensate family members for their own losses — which can include loss of companionship, consortium, emotional support and guidance — suffered when their loved one has died unexpectedly as a result of a medical error.
At Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC, our skilled legal team can help you navigate what is often a confusing legal landscape when pursuing a medically-related personal injury or wrongful death claim. When it comes to anesthesia errors, it is important to have a seasoned professional at your side, especially if and when your case goes to trial. Our diligent medical malpractice attorneys are committed to holding negligent healthcare professionals to account for any harm that was caused to you or a loved one.
Please feel free to contact us today to set up a no-cost, no-obligation initial legal consultation with one of our skilled Baltimore medical malpractice lawyers who can provide you with the necessary legal support throughout the personal injury claim process.