Cardiologists are medical care providers who focus on treating the heart and the blood vessels. Cardiologists have enormous responsibilities for patient care because a problem with the heart can turn deadly in a split second. Cardiologists are specialists, so may be held to a higher standard of care when it comes to diagnosing and treating heart conditions as compared with general practitioners.
When a cardiologist makes a mistake, this error can give rise to a claim for medical negligence. An Atlanta medical malpractice lawyer should be consulted by a victim of a cardiologist's errors or by family members of those who are killed due to mistakes made by a cardiologist. An attorney can help you to hold the cardiologist accountable and seek fair compensation for losses.
Top Reasons for Atlanta Medical Malpractice Claims Against Cardiologists
Recently, Medcity News published a report on a study designed to determine why cardiologists are sued for malpractice. The study included a review of 429 claims made against cardiologists between 2007 and 2013 which had been resolved. According to the study, there were certain common causes of most of the malpractice claims. For example:
- In 25 percent of claims, cardiologists were sued for diagnostic problems, such as failure to diagnose, a delayed diagnosis, or diagnosing the incorrect health issue. Doctors failed to diagnose both heart conditions and blood vessel problems.
- In 14 percent of claims, cardiologists were accused of failing to correctly manage the patient's treatment.
- In 12 percent of claims, cardiologists were accused of botching the treatment which they were performing on patients and making errors in the treatment process.
- In 11 percent of claims, cardiologists were sued because they made errors or botched surgical procedures they were performing.
- In six percent of claims, the cardiologists were sued because they made mistakes in the management of the medication the patients were being prescribed.
Researchers looked into detail about how the errors happened leading to lawsuits against cardiologists. They found:
- 25 percent of cardiologist errors arose because of problems with correctly assessing patients. These errors occurred when doctors didn't make proper use of clinical information, didn't order the right diagnostic tests, did not address abnormalities in testing, or failed to establish a differential diagnosis.
- 21 percent of cardiologist errors involved problems with technical performance of medical services. Misidentified anatomical structures, improper technique, and failure to address known complications of treatment were all technical problems which occurred.
- 20 percent of the mistakes happened because of patient error, like the patient failing to comply with the doctor's treatment plan.
- 18 percent of the problems occurred because the cardiologist made an error in selecting the patient's treatment or in managing the treatment process for the patient. Mistakes included recommending incorrect surgical procedures which weren't right for the patient or failing to prescribe the proper medication.
- 15 percent of the issues occurred because of failure to communicate among different providers. Doctors didn't correctly share or review medical records and didn't adequately communicate with other physicians involved in the patient's care.
- 14 percent of problems occurred because the doctor didn't communicate adequately with the patient or the patient's family. For example, improper follow-up instructions were given after surgery.
When cardiologists make these or other errors, patients can suffer adverse consequences. Doctors need to be held accountable for the problems their errors cause.
The Atlanta medical malpractice lawyers at Van Sant Law, LLC can represent patients or their families after a medical mistake. Call today at 404-991-5950 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation.