What constitutes medical malpractice?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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What constitutes medical malpractice?

I had a heart attack and had a stent put in. The surgeon who did my stent put me on a anti-platlet. Everything was going fine. I asked my PCP if there was a anti-platlet medicine that was cheaper. Then my PCP took me off of it and put me

on a very weak blood thinner. I don’t know why. Is this medical malpractice?

Asked on June 20, 2018 under Malpractice Law, Oklahoma


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Medical malpractice is medical care that does not meet currently accepted standards for such care, typically by being negligent or unreasonably careless. So if a reasonable doctor would not have done this, then it may be malpractice; but if a reasonable doctor would or may have, it is not. Based on what you write, there is no way to tell if this is malpractice or not: there may be legitimate reasons to put you on a weak blood thinner (e.g. you did not need a stronger one; the stronger one had risks or side effects outweighing the benefits you received; etc.). If other doctors tell you this was a bad or inappropriate decision, it may be malpractice, but if not, it would not be.
Even if it were malpractice, have you been hurt by it? If so, how much or how badly? The law only provides compensation for actual harm suffered or costs/losses incurred. Even if this was a bad decision, if you were not harmed, there is no point in suing or taking legal action--you'd get no compensation.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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