More than seven hundred ninety five thousand people suffer a stroke every year, of which about six hundred thousand are first attacks, and one hundred ninety five thousand are recurrent attacks. Three quarters of all strokes occur in people over the age of sixty five. The risk of a stroke doubles for each decade after the age of fifty five. It is estimated that someone suffers a stroke every forty seconds in the United States.
There are a several factors that increase the risk for suffering a stroke. For example, smokers have double the risk of suffering an ischemic stroke when compared to those who do not smoke. Atrial fibrillation (AF) is also another risk factor for suffering a stroke and can increase the chances by as much as five times. Finally, high blood pressure is by far the most significant risk factor for stroke.
With the advances in modern medicine available today stroke prevention and treatment has gotten much better. There are a number of new tools available that allow monitor patients and prevent strokes from happening. Doctors and nurses also have a much higher level of training that allows them to provide care that is of a much higher standard. That being said, these helpful aids are not without fault. There are still times when errors occur, a test is not ordered, and a device is not properly used or not used at all. When preventable strokes are not prevented, a type of malpractice has occurred and you do have legal rights that need to be protected.
Failing to diagnose a stroke is a very serious issue that can create significant consequences. When this happens, treatments that are available are not administered or not administered in time, and the effects of the stroke could be irreversible.
There are two main types of stroke: ischemic stroke and hemorrhagic stroke. An ischemic stroke happens when an artery that supplies oxygen and blood to the brain experiences a blockage. Roughly eighty percent of all strokes fall into this category. Blood clots are the most common reason for blockages in the arteries which lead to ischemic strokes. Hemorrhagic strokes are caused by blood vessels that break causing bleeding into the brain.
With proper and prompt treatment, the effects of an ischemic stroke can be reversed. This means that treatment needs to be administered within the first few hours of the stroke happening. If a patient suffers an ischemic stroke and medical personnel do not properly diagnose the condition in enough time to administer proper treatment, this could definitely be a case of medical malpractice.
If a medical malpractice lawsuit is filed, compensation can be sought for a number of different things when failing to properly diagnose a stroke. This includes: the cost of medical bills (past, present, and future), the cost of care that is now needed, a loss of income, pain and suffering, and emotional harm.
It is quite common for medical malpractice cases that focus on strokes to be separated into two distinct categories: those that could have been prevented if proper care was administered in a timely manner, and those that were the direct result of negligence. Some specific scenarios that can relate to these types of cases include: a failure to diagnose the potential for a stroke by not ordering the right types of tests or not recognizing a blockage or blood clots; misdiagnosis a stroke as another type of medical condition and therefore not treating the stroke properly; failing to administer anti coagulant medication to patients who have a history of blood clots, stroke, or atrial fibrillation; or not properly treating a patient during surgery which can cause a side effect condition that leads to a stroke.
If you or someone you know has suffered a stroke that could have been prevented with a proper diagnosis or by treating another underlying condition, you should not delay in seeking assistance from a personal injury attorney who specializes in the area of medical negligence and malpractice. These professionals are quite skilled in this area of the law and will work hard on your behalf. Since these cases can be quite complex, you should not attempt to file without the expertise of an attorney. Personal injury attorneys know the ins and outs of these types of cases quite well and will work to get you the justice you deserve.
Since many states have various statutes surrounding these types of claims, as well as strict statutes of limitations, just one minor detail could make or break your case. It is bad enough you have been victimized once; you should not risk becoming a victim twice.
Most personal injury attorneys work on a contingency basis which means you do not pay anything until the time your case settles. Having this small comfort will allow you to focus on your personal health and recovery, and erase the worry of funding your legal claim entirely.
In the event that you have lost a loved one due to an error that caused a stroke to go undiagnosed, you may have ground to file a wrongful death claim as well. These cases are filed on behalf of the decedent by family members, and can seek compensation for medical expenses, a loss of income, pain and suffering, as well as final expenses and funeral costs.
It is very important that these types of mistakes are not ignored, and that they are not left unpunished. Doctors have a specific duty of care that is implied for all patients and any time this is breached action needs to be taken. In today's modern medical world there is simply no excuse for sloppy care, and there is no reason that patients need to suffer needless harm for any reason.