Montana residents rely on their doctors to accurately diagnose their medical conditions and prescribe appropriate treatments, and they may pursue civil remedies by filing medical malpractice lawsuits when they are harmed due to the negligent behavior of their health care providers. One such case was resolved earlier in 2017 when a jury in Missouri awarded almost $29 million in damages to a woman who had been left permanently disabled because of a misdiagnosis.
According to court papers, the woman's doctor diagnosed depression and anxiety when she told them that she was feeling fatigued and suffered persistent panic attacks. The woman says that she begged her doctors to order neurological tests when her condition continued to deteriorate, but her physicians ignored her pleas for about five months. The woman's lawsuit reveals that the tests were only scheduled after she became so ill that she was no longer able to control her muscles or move her limbs.
The tests uncovered a rare and serious condition called Wilson's disease. The condition causes dangerous levels of copper to accumulate in the organs, and it can cause permanent brain damage or even death when treatment is delayed. Court records indicate that the woman is now unable to walk unassisted and receives her nourishment through a feeding tube. The jury awarded her $7.9 million for her past and anticipated future expenses and $21 million to cover her long-term health care costs.
Experienced personal injury attorneys may take great care when calculating the damages in medical malpractice lawsuits that involve catastrophically injured patients. Medical specialists and health care experts could be called upon to determine the type of treatment that will be required and for how long, and financial experts may be consulted to calculate how much this care will likely cost when changes in the cost of living have been taken into consideration.