Chemotherapy Malpractice

Cancer Misdiagnosis

When a patient undergoes chemotherapy and radiation treatment, it is already destructive to the body.  Chemotherapy drugs help to treat cancer by destroying cells that are cancerous.  These drugs are very toxic chemicals and need to be handled and dispensed with care.

There are times when the patient will say that the treatment and cure for their cancer are nearly as bad as the disease due to the unpleasant side effects which include vomiting, nausea, loss of appetite, and radiation burns.  In some cases, when medical negligence is involved, the patient can suffer even further injury.

Chemotherapy mistakes can include:

  • Providing the patient with the wrong medication – if a patient is accidentally given chemotherapy drugs when they required a different medication, serious injury or even death can result.
  • An overdose of chemotherapy medication – patients who need chemotherapy medication may be given too much of the medication or given it too frequently, potentially leading to fatal results.  When given in excessive dosages, this cancer treating drug can become poisonous.  Blood-related complications can also result from an overdose, possibly leading to serious infection or too excessive bleeding.

As with any type of medical negligence case, proving the negligence can be a very difficult task.  It can be difficult to see the difference between a poor outcome and a case of actual negligence.  Patients need to prove that their physician acted below the standard of care a reasonable doctor would have used in the treatment of their cancer.  When filing a claim against a hospital, the patient will need to prove that the hospital lapsed in a way that resulted in the hospital providing care that was below what a reasonable hospital would have provided.

Additionally, it is also necessary to prove that the doctor or hospital breach of care, or negligence, cause the patient’s injuries and not just a normal side effect of the radiation, or not just something that occurred during the course of the patient’s chemotherapy treatment.  The negligence or breach of care must be the direct cause of the patient’s injuries.