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Medical malpractice in Chicago may cause emotional harm, too

Last week on our Chicago medical malpractice blog, we mentioned that medical errors can lead to serious infections and fatal injuries. Infections and injuries may certainly result in physical harm that can be difficult for victims of hospital negligence to live with, but medical malpractice may cause more than just physical harm. When victims do recover from serious hospital mistakes, they may be left with other scars that could forever change their lives.

In an effort to understand just how damaging medical mistakes can be, ProPublica recently published an article on its website that features examples of a few of the many harms medical malpractice victims have experienced. Patient harms range from physical pain to emotional anguish. Harmed patients feel angry and isolated. Some patients have even had their marriages destroyed by medical malpractice.

As ProPublica points out, the aftermath of patient harm may be more damaging than what victims and their families anticipate. Victims of medical malpractice have reported experiencing trouble sleeping. Some can’t stop thinking about the harm that has been done to them. And others experience symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder.

When patients experience this type of emotional suffering after being harmed by medical malpractice, they may begin to feel powerless and isolate themselves from their families. Patients’ supporters may also begin to feel powerless, especially when it seems as if they can’t do anything or say anything to help their loved ones who have been harmed by medical malpractice. This may put a strain on relationships, jeopardizing marriages and the happiness of families.

In addition to the emotional consequences of medical malpractice, harmed patients may also be left with scars on their bodies or impairments that may remind them of the damage that has been done to them for the rest of their lives. Some patients feel ashamed and self conscious of their scars or other permanent injuries, which can make it difficult for patients to accept who they are and feel comfortable with others.

Source: ProPublica, “When harm in the hospital follows you home,” Olga Pierce, March 21, 2013

  • Medical malpractice may lead to physical injuries, but medical malpractice may also harm patients’ lives in a variety of other ways. After being harmed by medical malpractice, patients may want to consult an attorney who understands what they are going through while also fighting to protect their rights. To learn more about our firm and practice, please visit our Chicago hospital negligence lawyer page.


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