Under the doctrine of Informed Consent, a physician or medical provider has a duty to disclose what a reasonably prudent physician in the medical community would disclose to his or her patient concerning the risks that might be incurred from a proposed course of treatment. The purpose is to allow the patient to make an informed and intelligent decision after first balancing the risks and benefits of the proposed treatment. If a physician or medical provider has not obtained the patient’s informed consent and then performs an invasive procedure, even if the operation is successful, that person has a claim.
In a slip and fall case Mr. Achrem tried some years ago, a woman had slipped and fallen in the valet parking area of a large casino, fracturing her hip. Instead of waiting for the ambulance to arrive and assess her injuries, two valet workers grabbed her arms and legs, lifted her off the ground, and had her sit on a concrete bench. The jury later returned a substantial verdict in the Plaintiff’s favor because her informed consent had not been obtained.
In another case Mr. Achrem tried in California, the patient was told she had lung cancer and that an operation had to be performed right away. Because the doctors did not give her any other options, such as watchful waiting and careful monitoring of the suspected cancerous tumor, her informed consent was never obtained. After the operation was performed and most of her lung removed, the doctors discovered that the patient never had cancer in the first place.
Obtaining a party’s informed consent is critical. If you feel that a physician has failed to explain to you the benefits and risks involved in treatment, and you have been injured as a result of that failure, then you should consult with an experienced attorney to discuss your legal rights. Call us at (702) 734-3936. If you’re outside Nevada, dial (888) 734-6789.