What to do if I had tubes put in my ears about 4 or 5 times when I was younger and lost hearing a year or so after the surgeries?

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What to do if I had tubes put in my ears about 4 or 5 times when I was younger and lost hearing a year or so after the surgeries?

I had good hearing up and until then. I lost it in my right ear and then eventually my left ear; now today I wear hearing aids because of it. Could I sue the hospital for my loss? I lost my hearing without a reason; if I’m able to prove it was because of it is it possible that I could sue?

Asked on July 1, 2013 under Malpractice Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If the statute of limitations has not expired, you can sue the hospital and doctor for negligence.  Medical malpractice is negligence.

Pennsylvania has a two year statute of limitations in a medical malpractice case.  The two years is two years from the date of injury; however, since you didn't discover the hearing loss until a year after the medical procedure,  the statute of limitations would be two years from the date you discovered the hearing loss.

If the statute of limitations has expired, you won't be able to file your lawsuit.  If the statute of limitations has NOT expired, you can file your lawsuit for negligence against the hospital and doctor.

Prior to filing your lawsuit, it may be possible to settle the case with the insurance carriers for the hospital and doctor.  Your claims filed with those insurance carriers should include your medical bills, medical reports and if applicable documentation of wage loss.  Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will document your hearing loss and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering, which is an amount in addition to the medical bills.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement. 

If the case is settled with both insurance carriers (hospital and doctor), NO lawsuit is filed.   If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the insurance carriers, reject the settlement offers and file your lawsuit for negligence. If the case is settled with one of these parties (hospital or doctor) but not both, only name the party with whom the case has not settled as a defendant in your lawsuit for negligence.  If the case has NOT settled with both the doctor and hospital, name both as defendants in your lawsuit.

Your lawsuit must be filed prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or you will lose your rights forever in the matter.


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