If the medical error is alleged to have occurred back in 2004, I believe the Alabama statute of limitations will bar any legal claim. I'm not licensed in Alabama but most states have either a 1, 2, or 3 year statute limitations. This means that a lawsuit must be on file within that period or the legal claims are forever waived. Use avvo or google to find an Alabama lawyer to double check the statute of limitations in your state.
I believe the statute of limitations is 2 years in Alabama, so it would be too late to sue the doctor.
DISCLAIMER: David J. McCormick is licensed to practice law in the State of Wisconsin and this answer is being provided for informational purposes only because the laws of your jurisdiction may differ. This answer based on general legal principles and is not intended for the purpose of providing specific legal advice or opinions. Under no circumstances does this answer constitute the establishment of an attorney-client relationship.