When you seek medical treatment of any kind, you don’t anticipate leaving the office in worse condition than you were in upon arrival. And even if you receive substandard care, you certainly don’t expect to sustain a catastrophic spinal cord injury (SCI) while under your doctor’s watch.
The unfortunate truth, however, is that SCIs can and do happen as a result of medical malpractice. According to PennyGeeks, the leading causes of such injuries include motor-vehicle collisions, violent altercations, and sports accidents, but medical malpractice also contributes to a considerable number of new SCIs every year.
Here are some of the most common ways negligence on the part of healthcare providers can cause spinal cord injuries:
- A Slip and Fall Accident
Hospital and nursing home administrators must take reasonable measures to prevent slip and fall accidents at their facilities. They also have a duty of care to implement additional safety precautions for patients who have limited mobility or who take medications that cause dizziness.
For example, patients with a high risk of falling should be provided with a cane, walker, or wheelchair. They should also have safety bars around their beds and in bathrooms. If such measures are overlooked, patients are vulnerable to slipping, falling, and sustaining catastrophic injuries.
- A Chiropractic Mistake
Manipulating the musculoskeletal system—especially the spine—is the foundation of chiropractic care. While both the efficacy and safety of spinal adjustments remain up for debate, there is one truth that can’t be denied regarding this alternative therapy; if a chiropractor fails to use the utmost care when performing adjustments, the patient could be left with a damaged spinal cord.
- A Delayed Diagnosis
If a patient presents with a relatively minor injury like a vertebra fracture but doctors fail to diagnose it correctly and, therefore, fail to administer prompt treatment like immobilization, it can exacerbate the problem. Depending on the circumstances, the resulting complications could include spinal cord trauma.
- A Surgical Error
Performing surgery on any part of the body demands precision and diligence. Even a minor twitch of a surgeon’s hand could result in a permanently damaged nerve. While unanticipated surgical compilations do not constitute medical malpractice, preventable errors do.
- An Anesthesia Error
Prior to undergoing an operation, it is often necessary for patients to receive anesthesia. Regardless of whether the doctor administers local or general anesthesia, an error while doing so could cause spinal cord damage. Common mistakes include delivering too much of the drug and failing to monitor the patient closely for signs of distress.
Call 212-421-0300 to Speak with a Spinal Cord Injury Attorney in New York City
If you or someone you love sustained an SCI in a clinical setting and you think malpractice is to blame, contact The Law Office of Richard M. Kenny. We will conduct a thorough investigation and gather the evidence needed to strengthen your claim. Call 212-421-0300 or use our Online Contact Form to set up a free case evaluation with a spinal cord injury lawyer in New York City.