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Failure to Diagnose Anaphylaxis

Baltimore Attorneys for Medical Malpractice Victims

Many people have allergies to certain foods or substances. Although most allergic reactions are manageable, some allergens cause anaphylaxis, which is an extreme allergic reaction that can cause serious complications. Treating anaphylaxis requires prompt action, and when a doctor fails to diagnose anaphylaxis in a timely manner, the symptoms may become severe. In many cases, untreated anaphylaxis causes death. If you or a loved one suffered damages due to a doctor’s failure to diagnose anaphylaxis, you may be able to take legal action to protect your rights. At Arfaa Law Group, our skillful Baltimore medical malpractice lawyers are adept at helping parties harmed by a missed diagnosis seek compensation for their injuries, and we will fight diligently on your behalf to help you pursue any available damages.

Causes and Signs of Anaphylaxis

Anaphylaxis is the rapid onset of an allergic reaction that is commonly caused by foods, medications, and insect bites. Although anaphylaxis may ultimately cause swelling of the tongue and throat, difficulty breathing, and cardiovascular symptoms, the initial signs of anaphylaxis are often more subtle and include itchiness, hives, swelling, and nausea. Anaphylaxis often occurs within minutes of exposure to the allergen, but in some cases can take two hours to appear. In most cases, anaphylaxis is treated with an adrenaline shot, followed by antihistamines, and closely monitored. If a doctor misses the signs of anaphylaxis, however, and does not properly diagnose a patient or administers inadequate treatment, the patient’s symptoms will typically worsen, and the person may asphyxiate or go into cardiac arrest, and may ultimately die.

Elements of a Claim Arising Out of Failure to Diagnose Anaphylaxis

It is crucial to receive a timely diagnosis of anaphylaxis to treat and mitigate a patient’s symptoms. If a physician failed to diagnose you or a loved one with anaphylaxis, you may be able to pursue damages, and an experienced medical malpractice lawyer can help. Typically, a plaintiff alleging that he or she suffered harm due to a failure to diagnose will assert that the defendant physician acted negligently. Under Maryland law, a plaintiff alleging negligence in the context of medical treatment must first establish that the doctor had a duty to provide treatment that met or exceeded the standard of care.

The standard of care in medical malpractice cases is the care that a reasonable and competent practitioner in the same specialty would provide under the same circumstances. Once the plaintiff establishes the standard of care, he or she must then prove that the defendant departed from the standard of care. In most cases, this is proven via the testimony of an expert who also practices in the same specialty. The plaintiff then has to show that the departure from the standard of care proximately caused his or her alleged harm. In other words, the plaintiff must prove that he or she would not have been harmed absent the departure. Lastly, the plaintiff must prove he or she suffered actual damages.

If the plaintiff proves the defendant is liable, the plaintiff may be awarded compensation for the cost of any medical treatment he or she underwent or will need in the future, as well as compensation for any earnings lost as a result of the defendant’s negligence. The plaintiff may be awarded damages for pain and suffering as well. If the plaintiff has a loved one who died due to a failure to diagnose anaphylaxis, he or she may also be awarded funeral and burial costs, and damages for other losses.

Medical Malpractice Attorneys for Baltimore Area Residents

Anaphylaxis is a serious medical issue that requires immediate treatment. If you or someone you loved were harmed by a doctor’s failure to diagnose anaphylaxis in Baltimore, you can speak to a lawyer regarding your potential claims. At Arfaa Law Group, we can aggressively pursue any damages you may be owed to help you heal and move forward with your life. We can be reached via our online form or at 410-889-1850 to schedule a free and confidential meeting.