Negligence in the context of medical care can cause extensive injuries; as such, the law permits people harmed by the carelessness of their treatment providers to seek compensation via medical malpractice claims. Merely establishing negligence is not sufficient to recover damages from reckless providers, however. Rather, a plaintiff must also show that the defendant’s negligence caused their alleged harm, as explained in a recent Maryland medical malpractice matter. If you suffered damages due to incompetent medical care, you should confer with a Maryland medical malpractice lawyer regarding your rights as soon as possible.
The Facts of the Case
It is alleged that in 2015, the defendant performed a myomectomy on the plaintiff to remove a uterine fibroid. Following the surgery, she experienced significant pain that ultimately prompted her to seek additional care. Testing showed evidence of an infection, and she underwent a subsequent surgery that revealed she had a perforated bowel. She underwent a third surgery a week later, in which it was established that she had a perforated rectum as well.
It is reported that the plaintiff instituted a medical malpractice case against the defendant. The case proceeded to trial, and the defendant moved for judgment as a matter of law. The court denied his motion. The jury found in favor of the plaintiff, after which the defendant renewed his motion and filed a motion to alter the judgment.
Establishing Liability in Maryland Medical Malpractice Cases
In support of his motions, the defendant argued that the plaintiff failed to offer expert testimony sufficient to demonstrate that his negligence proximately caused her harm. Under Maryland law, a plaintiff in a medical malpractice case must demonstrate the applicable standard of care, show that the defendant breached the standard, and prove that their injuries were caused by the breach.
In other words, juries cannot deduce medical negligence absent expert testimony because issues such as the breach of the standard of care and medical causation are beyond the understanding of the average juror. Thus, expert testimony is required in medical malpractice cases, and an expert must express their opinion to a reasonable degree of medical certainty for the opinion to be considered more than mere speculation.
After reviewing the record in the subject case, the court found that the plaintiff’s expert opinion was sufficiently specific to demonstrate causation. As such, it denied the defendant’s motions.
Consult a Capable Maryland Attorney
Doctors have an obligation to provide their patients with competent care, and if they fail to do so and subsequently cause their patients harm, they may be liable for medical malpractice. If you sustained injuries due to the negligence of your doctor, it is in your best interest to consult an attorney to discuss your potential claims. The capable Maryland lawyers of Foran & Foran, P.A. have ample experience navigating the complexities of medical malpractice cases, and if you hire us, we will work tirelessly on your behalf. Our office is located in Greenbelt, and we frequently represent parties in medical malpractice lawsuits in cities in Prince George’s County and Montgomery County. You can reach us through our online form or by calling us at (301) 441-2022 to set up a confidential and free consultation.