Written by attorney Howard Evan Skolnick


A recent report published by Medscape describes the results of a poll of more than 4,000 physicians about their experiences being sued for medical malpractice. The poll showed that Ob/Gyn doctors are more likely than any other type of physician to be sued (85 percent), followed by general surgeons (83 percent) and orthopedists (79 percent).

According to the report, the most common reasons that doctors get sued, in general, include:

Unexpected injury (36 percent) Failure to diagnose (22 percent) Failure to treat (15 percent)

Dr made a mistake.jpg

Most physicians (52 percent), according to the poll, reported being surprised by a lawsuit. Meanwhile, 43 percent of male doctors and 42 percent of female doctors reported that they had suspected they might be sued.

For Ob/Gyn physicians in particular, the most common reasons for a lawsuit included:

Death of the mother or baby Failed tubal ligation Shoulder dystocia Bowel perforation Cesarean section (timing or performance)

In the majority of cases (32 percent), lawsuits against Ob/Gyn doctors got settled after deposition. In 15 percent of cases, a verdict was reached after a jury trial.

According to this study, in the majority of cases that go to trial, physicians win medical malpractice lawsuits (16 percent) vs. plaintiffs (5 percent). But that doesn't mean you shouldn't pursue a lawsuit if you've been injured by a medical professional. If you suspect medical negligence was the cause of your injury, you can at least get perspective about your situation by speaking with a lawyer to learn about your options. Medical negligence cases can leave an injured party with long-term unmanageable bills and burdens. In some cases a lawsuit can be an injured person's best and only hope of getting the help they need to pay expenses they never asked for.

Free Q&A with lawyers in your area

Avvo personal injury email series

Can’t find what you’re looking for?

Post a free question on our public forum.

Ask a Question

- or -

Search for lawyers by reviews and ratings.

Find a Lawyer