How Errors in Post-Chemo Monitoring Can Lead to Serious Harm for Patients
While chemotherapy may have been recommended by your physicians for cancer treatment, the treatment does not come without side effects and risks. The American Cancer Society describes a few of these, including easy bruising and bleeding, infection, anemia, kidney problems, and nerve issues. Many of the consequences of chemo are expected and unavoidable: They’re conditions you may need to endure for the best chance of eliminating, reducing, or otherwise treating cancer.
Still, though post-chemo complications may be foreseeable, your medical team is obligated to monitor your condition during and after treatment sessions. In a weakened state, you’re more likely to suffer harm if physicians don’t follow up with routine assessments. You may have a legal claim if they fail to do so, and a Miami medical malpractice attorney can help you determine what rights you have.
If you believe you have suffered due to risks associated with chemotherapy, here is some helpful information on the responsibilities of your medical providers and your rights if you have suffered due to chemotherapy side-effects:
Proper Post-Chemo Monitoring: You can expect to have your blood pressure, pulse, temperature, and other vital signs assessed when receiving chemo. Periodically, your physician will also conduct an evaluation to determine if the treatment is doing its job. After your sessions, health care providers should also monitor you for specific risks involved with chemotherapy, such as:
- Cardiac Toxicity: It’s important for your doctor to test for any heart problems or related symptoms that may be linked to chemo.
- Kidney Damage: Certain chemotherapy medications affect your kidney functions, potentially leading to long-term damage.
- Pulmonary Problems: You could sustain lung damage from some forms of chemo, particularly when you’re also receiving radiation therapy for cancer.
- Liver Damage: Liver Dysfunction, also known as hepatotoxicity, can result from chemotherapy. You may notice the symptoms yourself, since liver damage often manifests as a yellowish skin coloration – i.e., jaundice.
Play an Active Part in Your Chemo Monitoring: Ultimately, it’s the job of your health care providers to monitor you and protect your health while going through chemo. However, you may support your physician’s efforts by:
- Keeping a pain diary detailing what you endure in between sessions;
- Completing notes on the side effects you experience in the days and weeks after a chemo treatment;
- Contacting your doctor regarding any abnormalities; and,
- Requesting proper medications to alleviate symptoms, where possible.
Your Rights When Post-Chemo Monitoring Fails: A physician’s error in post-chemo treatment could amount to medical malpractice, but a mistake alone doesn’t prove your case. You also need to show that your doctor’s actions deviated from the standard of care that other physicians would have provided under the same circumstances. You must also establish that this deviation was the direct cause of your post-chemo injuries. These elements are essential to recovering compensation for your losses in a med mal case.
Speak to a Florida Medical Malpractice Lawyer for Free
For more information on your legal rights and remedies after errors in post-chemo care, please contact the Miami medical malpractice lawyers at Freidin Brown, P.A. You could be entitled to compensation for your losses through a medical malpractice claim. We can explain your options after conducting a free case evaluation at our offices.