Podiatric Malpractice: What You Need to Know
Ragain & Clark January 31, 2023
Your feet play an important yet often overlooked role in your everyday life, and an injury or other issue can cause numerous complications in your daily life. Podiatrists are doctors who specialize in the treatment of the foot, ankle, and related structures of the leg. Despite extensive education and years of training and experience, they can unfortunately still make mistakes. Some of these mistakes are unavoidable, while others may rise to the level of medical malpractice. If you believe that you have suffered harm as a result of malpractice, a podiatric malpractice lawyer can help you get the compensation you deserve.
Symptoms of Podiatric Malpractice
Depending on the type of treatment you received, symptoms can vary widely. For example, swelling and pain can persist following surgery. As a result, you should ask your doctor what you can expect during your recovery. Regardless, you should seek a second opinion if you experience any of the following symptoms following treatment:
- Excessive pain, swelling, or discomfort
- Significant loss of mobility beyond what was anticipated
- Your condition becomes worse following surgery
Trust your instincts and listen to your body. Seek medical treatment if you are experiencing anything that seems unusual. If it is confirmed that something went wrong with your treatment, then you should consider contacting a podiatric malpractice lawyer as soon as possible.
Common Examples of Podiatric Malpractice
The causes of podiatric malpractice are the same as almost any other type of medical malpractice case. Interestingly, studies suggest that the majority of podiatric malpractice claims arise from elective procedures. In other words, most podiatric malpractice claims occur in cases where treatment was arguably unnecessary. Whether your treatment was elective or necessary, anyone can become the victim of malpractice. Some common examples of podiatric malpractice include the following:
- Misdiagnosis due to failure to poor intake or inadequate examinations
- Prematurely recommending surgery before less invasive options such as boots, braces, cortisone injections, or custom shoes or insoles
- Surgical errors, such as in the removal of bunions or other growths
- Inadequate post-operative care such as improper bandages or failure to provide the patient with necessary instructions
- Failure to obtain the patient’s informed consent by failing to explain the potential risks and complications as well as viable alternatives
This is not an exhaustive list. If you suspect that there were problems with your treatment that caused you harm, the best thing to do is talk with a podiatric malpractice lawyer before it is too late.
How Podiatric Malpractice Can Affect Your Life
Your feet are one of those parts of your body that you do not think about until they hurt. Foot problems can make it painful to walk or run and affect your general mobility. In some cases, the pain can cause you to lose sleep, be unable to focus at work, and generally keep you from engaging in general daily living. Dealing with podiatric issues as a result of malpractice can be especially difficult for people who enjoy walking, running, hiking, skiing, or other sports and recreational activities that require you to be on your feet.
Podiatric malpractice can not only affect your quality of life but also result in economic losses. For people who are on their feet for work, podiatric malpractice means that they cannot do their jobs. At a minimum, this could be a temporary loss of income. For those who are permanently disabled as a result of podiatric malpractice, they face a loss of not only their current income but also their future earnings.
For athletes, podiatric malpractice can have a significant impact on their future. High school athletes can lose college scholarships. College athletes may lose their scholarships or the opportunity to play professionally.
The bottom line is that podiatric malpractice is much more than a temporary inconvenience. A podiatric malpractice lawyer can help you get fair compensation for your claim.
How Long Do You Have to Pursue a Claim?
Podiatric malpractice claims are subject to statutes of limitations – laws that require that you file a lawsuit by a specific date or you will lose all of your rights. How long you have to pursue your claim will depend on where you received treatment:
- In Wyoming, you have two years from the date you received treatment
- Montana’s statute of limitations is more complicated, but currently, you have two years from the date you received treatment or from the date you discovered or should have discovered your injury
Whether you are in Montana or Wyoming, these deadlines may sound like you have plenty of time to pursue a claim. Unfortunately, the longer you wait, the harder it will be to prove your case. You should instead contact a podiatric malpractice lawyer as soon as you suspect your doctor committed malpractice.
Contact a Podiatric Malpractice Lawyer Today
At Ragain & Clark, we help people who have suffered as a result of podiatric malpractice get the compensation they need to move forward. To schedule a free consultation, contact us today at 307-388-6400 (Worland) or 406-651-8888 (Billings) to discuss your case and your options.