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Should a doctor tell me of every possible procedure risk?

Q: Does a doctor have a duty to tell me of every possible risk from having a medical procedure?

A: Doctors have the responsibility to be diligent in telling patients about the risks of treatment. It is important that a doctor’s duty includes discussing possible alternatives to the treatment as well. The “bar” is set at what other reasonable doctors in their field would reasonably inform about the treatment. This medical standard of care is the bar used in many medical malpractice cases to determine if the patient received adequate care.

In a perfect world, you would have a doctor go over every and all risks associated with a given procedure or treatment. Unfortunately, though, many healthcare professionals are overworked and burdened with more patients than they have time. This, however, is never a good excuse for failing to inform patients of the risks connected to their treatment. Patients must be their own best advocate and press hurried doctors for answers to all of their questions.

When healthcare professionals fail to adequately warn patients of the dangers connected with their treatment, they face medical malpractice lawsuits. A Virginia medical malpractice lawyer can help patients determine if their doctor met the medical standard of care and if they did not, can help point out what should have been done instead.

 

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