A Tragic Appointment
A now-deceased San Antonio area dentist is being sued for medical malpractice after he incorrectly administered anesthesia and left his patient his severe brain damage. The incident occurred almost exactly a year ago when Maria Elena Lugo Querales went in for a dental procedure requiring anesthesia in May 2022. According to San Antonio Express-News, everything seemed normal at the office, and the doctor appeared to be fine – she was unaware that he had just been reported as a missing person the day prior after getting lost near his home due to a medical condition that was affecting his cognitive abilities. According to the complaint, the dentist administered an incorrectly large dose of anesthesia and left her without a heartbeat and without breathing for long enough for her to contract anoxic encephalopathy, which is a severe injury to the brain due to a lack of oxygen.
Did You Know?
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that a staggering 5.3 million United States Citizens, or 2% of the population, are mentally disabled due to an injury to the brain.
Medical Malpractice Litigation in Texas
Medical malpractice was found to be the third leading cause of death in the United States by a John Hopkins School of Medicine study. Despite this fact, there are many barriers to citizens seeking legal recourse after being injured by a medical procedure.
Why is negligence in Medical Malpractice so difficult to prove?
In order to prove medical malpractice in Texas, the plaintiff must show through extensive evidence that the defendant (or the medical professional, in this case) acted with negligence. This is incredibly difficult because in order to prove that the medical professional(s) behaved carelessly, one must have an extensive understanding of medical procedures. Additionally, it’s incredibly expensive to prove negligence because an expert witness (or another medical professional) will need to testify that what the medical professional did during the procedure that caused the incident is not what any reasonable medical professional would have done in the same scenario.
Proving damages and duty of care
In addition to proving negligence, the plaintiff must also show that the medical professional had a duty of care. This is very straightforward to prove – all you need to show is that you were their patient when the medical malpractice occurred, which is easily accomplished through medical records.
Damages can include a wide range of economic injuries to the plaintiff. Medical bills and missed work can be submitted as damages, as well as pharmacy bills or future lost income. It may also include modifications to vehicles or the plaintiff’s home to accommodate a new lifestyle as a result of the disability.
Medical Malpractice Lawyers in San Antonio
If you or a loved one are one of the hundreds of thousands of individuals affected by injury or disability as a result of medical malpractice, contact the Carabin Shaw Law Firm. We have been representing those injured during medical procedures for thirty years in San Antonio and the surrounding area. Contact us today at 800-862-1260 and receive your free case evaluation. We look forward to serving you.
Published May 1, 2023