CHIROPRACTOR MALPRACTICE LAWSUIT
Chiropractic Malpractice Lawyer in Houston
Many different types of doctors can engage in medical malpractice or negligence. Primary care physicians, gynecologists, and even chiropractors are capable of injuring patients when they fail to uphold the expected standard of care. Chiropractic treatment is a regular occurrence for many people with back pain and neck pain. However, a chiropractor’s negligence could lead to serious injuries, or even wrongful death. If you have suffered an injury due to chiropractor malpractice, the chiropractic malpractice lawyers at Reich & Binstock are here for you.
We have extensive experience litigating medical malpractice and chiropractic malpractice lawsuits. Our personal injury team is equipped with the best resources to help you fight for fair compensation after your injury. We will thoroughly investigate your claim, gather evidence to support you, negotiate for a fair settlement, and take your case to trial if necessary. To schedule your free consultation about your chiropractor malpractice claim, please call our office at 713-622-7271 today.
What Is a Chiropractor?
Chiropractic medicine has recently come into the spotlight on both social media and local news, for a few different reasons. Social media accounts often share videos of chiropractic manipulation that produces popping and cracking sounds. Many users love the sounds produced by chiropractic care, calling them “oddly satisfying.” However, these satisfying manipulations can result in a chiropractic injury if negligence comes into play. An example of how chiropractic malpractice can affect patients can be seen in this news story of a Georgia resident who was left paralyzed after her routine visit to her chiropractor.
Chiropractors are healthcare professionals who focus on the neuromusculoskeletal system, which includes the bones, muscles, nerves, tendons, and ligaments. Most chiropractors focus on alleviating head and neck pain. Their main forms of treatment include spinal manipulation, chiropractic adjustment, cervical manipulative therapy, heat and cold treatments, and other non-surgical techniques. They will also work with patients to help them develop exercise plans. While they can perform certain chiropractic procedures on their patients, they cannot prescribe pain medication.
What Is the Chiropractic Standard of Care?
Many patients prefer to work with someone in the chiropractic profession if they want to avoid surgery. While it’s true that chiropractic treatment is a less invasive option, chiropractors must still adhere to a certain standard of medical care. Before a chiropractor ever begins medical treatment on a patient, they should conduct a thorough medical history and identify any and all existing problems. This helps to ensure that they do not worsen an existing condition.
Additionally, they should always opt for the safest, most effective treatment options. This not only protects patients from unnecessary risks, but it also protects the chiropractor in the event of a lawsuit. As long as they do what a reasonable, similarly experienced chiropractor in the same area would do under the same circumstances, they are following the standard of chiropractic care.
What Is Chiropractic Malpractice?
Chiropractor malpractice is the inappropriate, illegal, improper, or negligent treatment of a patient by a chiropractor. In general, there are two main types of chiropractor malpractice, which are failure to diagnose and providing treatment that leads to injury or death. Basically, when a chiropractor deviates from the expected standard of care, this can be considered chiropractic negligence. A chiropractor’s negligence could very easily injure or paralyze a patient, which is why treatment should always be done carefully by a competent chiropractor.
Types of Chiropractor Malpractice
There are several ways in which a chiropractor can engage in negligent manipulation or malpractice. Some specific examples of chiropractor malpractice include the following.
- Negligent manipulation of the body
- Chiropractic induced stroke
- Failure to diagnose medical conditions that require immediate care
- Failure to provide informed consent to patients
Why Do People Sue Chiropractors?
Patients sue chiropractors when their negligent behavior results in new injuries or worsening of an existing medical condition. When these injuries happen, patients are often hospitalized, which means they miss work and accrue medical expenses. Filing a personal injury lawsuit against a negligent chiropractor or medical doctor can give victims the opportunity to seek compensation for these financial losses.
Injuries in Chiropractic Malpractice Cases
Many different types of injuries can occur from negligent chiropractic practice. A negligent chiropractor’s manipulation of the body could result in worsening of an existing injury, or a new serious injury. Examples of injuries that could occur if a chiropractor fails to uphold the standard of care include the following.
- Chiropractic induced stroke
- Vertebral artery dissection
- Neck injuries
- Injuries to the patient’s spine
- Herniated disc
- Broken ribs
- Fractured vertebrae
- Sciatic nerve pain
- Pinched nerve
- Nerve damage
Other injuries are possible, as this list is not exhaustive. If you suffered injuries or illness at the hands of a negligent chiropractor or medical doctor, contact a medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible. You have the right to file chiropractic lawsuits against all parties responsible for your injuries.
Yes, it is possible to suffer a neck injury as a result of negligent neck manipulation by a chiropractor. Chiropractic manipulations of the neck, when performed improperly, could cause vertebral artery dissection, which can then lead to a stroke. Vertebral artery dissection occurs when the chiropractor’s treatment of a patient creates a tear in the vertebral artery. This is one of the major arteries that supplies the brain with oxygen-rich blood. When these tears occur, blood can pool in the wall of the artery, causing a clot. If a piece of this blood clot breaks off and makes its way to the brain, this could cause a stroke.
Yes. A chiropractic induced stroke occurs when chiropractic treatment and manipulation cause a stroke in the patient. Although these injuries are rare, they are still possible. They are also potentially deadly. Patients who regularly have their neck adjusted or manipulated should be aware of stroke symptoms before neck adjustments so that they can know what to look for. Strokes are serious medical emergencies that could be the basis of wrongful death cases if the patient passes away.
Yes. Paralysis is another rare, yet possible injury that can result from negligent spine or neck manipulation by a chiropractor. If a chiropractor, or any other medical professional for that matter, injures you, you have the right to seek compensation. While a neck adjustment is very unlikely to paralyze a patient, gross negligence can lead to this serious injury.
How to Sue a Chiropractor
Injury victims can pursue compensation from substandard chiropractic care in the form of chiropractic lawsuits. Whether you are alleging professional negligence or malpractice, you can seek compensatory damages for your case. We strongly recommend working with an attorney who has experience handling chiropractor malpractice cases. During your case, you will need to show the following in order to have a successful outcome.
- The licensed chiropractor owed you, the patient, a duty of care. This can be proven through showing that the defendant chiropractor did, in fact, treat you. You can use your medical records as evidence of this.
- The chiropractor breached that duty of care, which means they acted outside the accepted standard of care. Many cases require an expert opinion from another similarly trained, similarly experienced chiropractor as evidence. Expert testimony can help show how the chiropractor acted, versus how they should have acted.
- You must also show that you suffered injury or damages as a result of that malpractice. Medical records, expert witnesses, and other forms of evidence can help prove this element of your case.
Statute of Limitations for Chiropractic Malpractice Lawsuits
Patients who are harmed by their chiropractor only have a certain amount of time in which to file a claim and take legal action. Because this time period varies from state to state, we recommend speaking with a local attorney to ensure that you file in a timely manner. In the state of Texas, victims have two years from the date of the negligent act to file a medical malpractice claim against their chiropractor.
How Does Chiropractic Malpractice Happen?
Malpractice can happen in a number of ways. In order to prove these cases, you and your attorney will need to show the 4 elements of negligence. Although the underlying cause is negligence, there are a few specific ways in which a chiropractor fails to uphold the standard of care.
- Chiropractors should always take a medical history of their patients before administering treatment of any kind. Failure to do so could worsen an existing injury or create new injuries. For example, let’s say that a patient has osteoporosis, which makes the bones brittle. If a chiropractor proceeds with treatment without checking a patient’s history, they risk fracturing their patient’s bones.
- When a chiropractor finds the source of your symptoms and determines that they do not have the education or tools to treat it, they should recommend that you seek treatment from the appropriate medical professionals. If they decide to treat you anyway, they could do more harm than good.
- Patients also must give what is known as informed consent. This means that, in order to really consent to a procedure, they must fully understand the risks and steps in the procedure. If a chiropractor fails to inform a patient of this information, they could be held liable for any injuries to the patient.
How Much Are Chiropractor Malpractice Cases Worth?
This heavily depends on the severity of the injuries you suffered, as well as the underlying facts of the case. Without examining all the evidence, it is very difficult to assign an estimated value to a case. Speaking with an attorney is the best way to determine what your case might be worth. In general, the more serious the injury, the more money the case is worth. For example, if your chiropractor causes you to have a pinched nerve in your neck, your case will probably be worth less than one involving fractured vertebrae.
Damages in a Chiropractic Malpractice Lawsuit
When you decide to pursue compensation from the negligent chiropractor who injured you, you should be able to recover the following types of damages.
- Current and future medical expenses
- Physical therapy
- Current and future lost wages
- Loss of earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Other financial losses associated with your injuries
Do You Need a Chiropractor Malpractice Attorney?
If you suffered harm or injury as a result of negligent chiropractic care, you deserve compensation for that injury. At Reich & Binstock, we have extensive experience filing medical malpractice lawsuits on behalf of injured patients against their health care providers. To determine if you have the basis for a medical malpractice action, please contact our law firm as soon as possible. Call 713-622-7271 to schedule your free consultation with a skilled and compassionate Houston medical malpractice lawyer.
There is a never a fee unless we recover on your behalf.