Physiatrists focus on enhancing and restoring functional abilities in patients with musculoskeletal, neurological, or orthopedic conditions, and their care is often instrumental in helping patients recover from injuries and improve their quality of life. If physiatrists do not exercise due care when offering diagnoses and treatments, though, they may make errors that harm, rather than help, their patients, and their behavior may be considered malpractice. If you suffered injuries because of physiatrist malpractice, it is in your best interest to speak to an attorney about your potential claims. The experienced Baltimore medical malpractice lawyers at Arfaa Law Group can inform you of your rights and gather any evidence in your favor to provide you with a good chance of obtaining a successful outcome.Harm Caused by Physiatrist Malpractice
Physiatrists, or physical medicine and rehabilitation physicians, specialize in treating a wide spectrum of conditions that impact physical function and mobility, including musculoskeletal disorders, neurological conditions, orthopedic injuries, and developmental disorders. Their diagnostic process includes reviewing patient medical, conducting physical examinations, and, in some instances, employing diagnostic imaging and tests to identify the underlying causes of impairment or disability. Physiatrists offer a range of treatments, including personalized exercise programs, physical and occupational therapies to improve strength and daily living skills, medication management, assistive devices, and corticosteroid injections.
Physiatrists, unfortunately, are not immune from making mistakes in their practice, and in many cases, such mistakes cause their patients harm. If a physiatrist fails to accurately diagnose a condition and it results in incorrect or delayed treatment, it could constitute malpractice. For example, misdiagnosing a spinal cord injury as a muscle strain and providing inappropriate treatment could harm the patient's long-term prognosis. Similarly, if a physiatrist prescribes exercises or therapies that are inappropriate for a patient's condition, it may result in worsened symptoms. If a physiatrist does not thoroughly explain the risks, benefits, and potential alternatives of a treatment or procedure, and the patient suffers harm as a result, it could be considered malpractice as well.Proving Liability for Physiatrist Malpractice
People harmed by inadequate care rendered by a physiatrist will often seek compensation for their losses via medical malpractice claims. Typically, as the harm caused by careless doctors is unintentional, a plaintiff in a medical malpractice case will set forth a negligence claim against the defendant. In Maryland, a plaintiff averring negligence must first show that the defendant owed them a duty. The duty a doctor owes a patient is to abide by the standard of care, which means that they must treat them as a reasonable doctor working in the same practice area would in the same situation. Next, the plaintiff needs to prove that the defendant departed from the standard of care. Lastly, the plaintiff has to show that the defendant's breach directly caused them to suffer quantifiable harm.
As the average judge or juror does not have any independent understanding of the standard of care imposed on doctors, the plaintiff will most likely have to hire a medical expert to testify regarding the demands of the standard of care and the ways in which the defendant deviated from the standard and to link the defendant’s breach to the plaintiff’s harm.
Plaintiffs who successfully medical malpractice may be awarded damages for the harm they've suffered due to the defendant’s negligence. These damages can be both economic and non-economic. Economic damages include tangible financial losses such as medical bills, rehabilitation costs, lost wages, and even future medical expenses. Non-economic damages, on the other hand, compensate for intangible losses like pain, suffering, emotional distress, and the loss of quality of life.Talk to a Dedicated Baltimore Attorney
Physiatrists errors can cause pain, delayed recovery, and, in some instances, permanent detriments, and people harmed by physiatrist negligence have the right to seek justice. If you or someone you love were hurt by physiatrist malpractice, it is advisable to talk to an attorney about what damages you may be owed. The dedicated Baltimore lawyers of Arfaa Law Group have ample experience demonstrating that careless doctors should be found responsible for the losses they cause, and if we represent you, we work diligently to pursue any compensation available. We have an office in Baltimore, where we regularly assist people in the pursuit of damages from negligent healthcare providers. You can contact us at (410) 889-1850 or through our online form to set up a meeting.