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Looking at 3rd foot surgery as dr cannot get it right, can i sue?

Spokane, WA |

Had $54,000 reconstructive foot surgery on 4-24-12, was in wheelchair for 3 months, went in for followup on 7-10-12, had to have $9000 emergency surgery to remove the two titanium screws in right foot, as they were in the wrong positions, one was poking out the heel and the other out the top of the foot. Back in wheelchair for another month. All this time cannot work/not able to walk. Now, Nov 24th, in the middle of the night, got excruciating pain in the heel when one foot touched the other. The second screw that was inserted is now coming out. I am looking at a third surgery, more months of being in a wheelchair and now will have to quit working and supporting my family, because of this doctors screw up. What legal rights do i have? can i sue for malpractice? would I win?

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Attorney answers 4


Sorry to hear about your difficult experience. I will give you a short answer, but understand that this type of public forum is not an ideal place to discuss and analyze specific facts. To prove a case for malpractice, in most cases, you need to prove: (1) breach of the standard of care, (2) harm/damages, and (3) causation. All of these elements (again in most cases) must be established by expert testimony. A poor outcome/complications may or may not be the result of negligence. You should consult with an experienced medical malpractice lawyer to discuss your situation in more detail. Good luck and I hope you recover soon.


I agree with Mr. Thayer. You should consult with a locally experienced medical malpractice attorney to review all relevant medical records and evaluate your case. I hope you found my response helpful.


The first thing that must be established is the appropriate standard of care, and whether that standard was upheld. There is always some chance that a surgery will not correctly fix a medical problem, or that complications will ensue even if the surgery was done properly. Aside from a bad result, I don't see anything in your facts that specifically screams out malpractice. I am NOT suggesting you add more public facts to your scenario (in fact I recommend the opposite, since this communication is not privileged). You may well have a case, but you will only know this by consulting with a personal injury attorney experienced in malpractice cases who can go through the details of the records, and likely will need to pay for some degree of review by a medical professional before deciding whether to proceed. I would suggest you contact Greg Casey in Spokane to see whether he will review your case.

I only practice in Washington State and may not practice in your area. This answer is a brief hopefully helpful tip to you which is correct to the best of my knowledge and is meant as a starting point for you to conduct further investigation. However, it is made without knowing the factual details of your case or doing any legal research and so may be in error as to either the facts or law. I am not your attorney and I am not giving a legal opinion by this answer.


I am sorry to hear about your situation. It sounds as though you've had a rough ride. That said, I agree with the other attorneys who have posted responses to your question on this forum. Medical malpractice cases are extremely difficult and expensive cases to prosecute. Because of this, there are very few attorneys willing to take on such cases without there being clear evidence of malpractice and significant damages. Clearly, you've suffered significant damages as the result of your foot injury. However, based on the facts you've described so far, it is difficult to determine whether malpractice was in fact committed.

Taking all of this into consideration, I would caution you against divulging too much information in this public forum, and would advise that you contact an attorney who specializes in medical malpractice cases in the Spokane area. I am also curious to know how you injured your foot to begin with, since this may present an alternative path to recovery. Good luck.

The information contained in this message is for general informational purposes only. It is not intended to be legal advice, nor is it a substitute for professional legal services. The Scott Law Firm, PLLC disclaims the formation of an attorney-client relationship by use of AVVO, and no such relationship exists unless and until a written Fee Agreement has been endorsed by The Scott Law Firm, PLLC and the client. Furthermore, given the public nature of this forum, there can be no expectation of privacy, confidentiality, privilege, or any other protection from disclosure.

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