Medical Negligence: A Burning Issue

When you have suffered a burn injury due to a doctor’s medical negligence, it is normal to feel a sense of betrayal. After placing your trust in a hospital or doctor for treatment for an injury or illness, the last thing you expect is to be burned.

Medical Negligence

It can also be frustrating to rack up medical bills that are due to another person’s mistake or negligence, especially a medical professional’s. But sadly, this does happen. Here are some types of burn injuries that may be caused by medical negligence.

Types of Burn Injuries Caused by Medical Negligence

When most people think of burn injuries, they think of a fire or someone touching a hot stove. However, the truth is that burns can come in a number of different forms and caused by different factors. Burns that result from medical negligence may fall into one of the following categories:

  • Radiation burns: Some forms of cancer are treated with radiation, but there are a few serious risks for patients. When radiation is used excessively, or the physician does not have enough experience or expertise with the use of radiation therapy for cancer treatment, it could result in radiation burns. Burns caused by radiation can destroy tissue – which is how cancer cells are fought – but when it is not applied properly, it may damage or kill healthy cells. Radiation burns can be excruciatingly painful, especially for patients who are already suffering from a serious disease.
  • Laser burns: Many doctors are increasingly using lasers as a surgical tool because they allow surgeons to have more precision when performing certain procedures. When compared with open surgery, lasers help in reducing the possibility of mistakes and decreasing scarring and recovery time for patients. However, using lasers come with risks, especially when the medical professional handling the laser does not have sufficient training in handling the laser. Laser burns or scarring are also common in places like “medical spas”, where cosmetic hair laser removal procedures are performed by technicians or nurses who do not have adequate training or education in the use of lasers.
  • Thermal burns: A thermal burn is caused by scalding liquids, open flames, and other sources of heat. When flammable oxygen is used in close proximity to sources of heat like surgical cauterizing tools, it may cause a fire to break out and burn someone. Additionally, a process called autoclaving is used to sterilize some surgical instruments with the help of heat. When an autoclaved instrument is not cooled properly before it is used on a patient, it may result in serious burns.
  • Chemical burns: Some hazardous or harsh chemicals, such as industrial cleaning solvents, may lead to painful burns on the skin. If such dangerous chemicals are not stored properly in a hospital or medical facility, a patient may come into contact with them and burn themselves.
  • Electrical burns: Faulty equipment or exposed wires can cause electrical burns. If a hospital or medical facility fails to maintain the equipment or the premises properly and a patient suffers a burn as a result, the hospital may be liable for malpractice.

Consequences of Medical Negligence

One of the most painful injuries you can suffer is a severe burn. It can cause serious damage to skin, blood vessels, nerve endings, internal organs or muscles, depending on the type of burn. These injuries can take a long time to heal and may require skin grafts or surgical intervention. Even with such treatments, a patient with burn injuries may be left disfigured or scarred for life, and such patients are also more prone to infections.

As you can see, burns are a serious injury, especially when caused by medical negligence. If you have been burned as a result of your doctor or other medical professional’s negligence, you should make sure that your rights are protected and seek the expertise of a legal professional experienced in handling medical malpractice cases. You can also file a suit for not having received the right standard of care.

The Most Complete Law Firm in the Region

If you or a loved one has suffered a burn due to medical negligence, you should get in touch with one of the medical malpractice attorneys at Hardesty, Tyde, Green & Ashton, P.A. We will make sure that your case is handled with care. Call us at 904-249-9030 for a free consultation.

Additional Reading:

Medical Malpractice: Understaffed and Overworked

Are You Protected in the Event of an Incorrect Medical Diagnosis?