I am currently 21 weeks pregnant and a level 2 ultrasound in a hospital proved to me that a cyst in my stomach is too big and too dangerous to have while pregnant or to have period. My regular doctor saw this cyst when I was just 14 weeks and said I was fine and that we would monitor it. But the doctor yesterday assured us that a cyst that big has to be removed right away. Now I'm due for surgery which is riskier since I'm already in my second trimester. Is this a case of medical negligence? She obviously knew this cyst was dangerous. its about the size of a volleyball and she didn't do anything about it or refer me anywhere!
Luckily, the cyst was caught. Hopefully the surgery will go well. Although it appears there may have been negligence, there are no damages yet and hopefully there won't be. Unless something goes wrong in surgery that could have been prevented if it was removed sooner, there is not much of a claim there. There are 2 main components (there are other elements as well) to every medical malpractice claim: 1) liability and 2) damages. Although liability may be present, currently it does not appear that you have any damages to pursue.
The $64,000 question is whether the seven-week delay makes any difference to your health or that of your unborn child. The reason anyone sues for medical malpractice is because they were harmed; it's too early in this process to know whether you have been harmed. Remember, even if there has been medical malpractice, you are not entitled to recover for it unless the malpractice itself proximately caused damages.
Work with your physicians now towards a favorable outcome for your health and that of your unborn child, and worry about malpractice and whether it caused harm later, if and only if there is a bad result. In such event you may consult with a malpractice lawyer and an expert physician who can assist you to evaluate whether there was a breach of the applicable standard of care by your regular doctor and, if so, whether it caused damages.
Not legal advice as I don't practice law in California or hold California licensure. It's just my two cents on the facts you describe in light of general principles of law. If you need legal advice, please consult a lawyer who holds California licensure. I practice in Vermont ONLY.
You may find it helpful to review the Legal Guide I have published on Avvo.com which deals with medical malpractice and what it is. You can access the Guide through my profile page on Avvo.com. At this juncture you do not have any apparent a damages, regardless of whether or not any medical malpractice has been committed. Should you have untoward consequences as a result of this situation, you may wish to consult with a personal injury attorney in your area who handles medical malpractice cases.
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Mr. Lundeen is licensed to practice law in Florida and Vermont. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. Mr. Lundeen strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in your state in order to ensure proper advice is received.
"BLTG" is what some (me included) call the situation where a doctor makes a bad call but no harm actually results. Should Doctor One miss a key diagnosis but Doctor Two makes the pick up and the patient gets treated without problem, then Doctor One will not be liable for medical negligence... Doctor One was "Better Lucky than Good."
Paul J. Molinaro, M.D., J.D.
Attorney at Law, Physician, Broker
Fransen & Molinaro, LLP
980 Montecito Drive, Suite 206
Corona, CA 92879
www.fransenandmolinaro.com / www.888MDJDLAW.com
"When you need a lawyer, call the Doctor... Call Paul J. Molinaro, M.D., J.D... Call (888)MDJDLAW."
* This post and all others I make on Internet are for informational purposes only. None of the information or materials I post are legal advice. Nothing I post as comments, answers, or other communications should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing of this information does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. While I try to be accurate, I do not guarantee accuracy.
** Fransen & Molinaro, LLP practices in the areas of personal injury, medical malpractice, and real estate law and does so anywhere in the State of California.
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