If both my regular physician and my OB/GYN failed to notify me that I was pregnant, can I sue them?

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If both my regular physician and my OB/GYN failed to notify me that I was pregnant, can I sue them?

I gave birth almost a month ago. Unfortunately I was completely unprepared seeing as those in the medical community failed to tell me I was pregnant. When I do the calculations I became pregnant approximately last summer. I saw my regular physician in September, and my OB/GYN in January. Both doctors did full PAP smear exams, and neither one notified me I was pregnant. Due to this I had missed days off work during the 9 months and lost my job in January due to my absences.

Asked on May 3, 2011 under Malpractice Law, Florida

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

I am unsure I understand. Many women are pregnant and did not suffer any of the symptoms of pregnancy (basic one being stoppage of your menstrual cycle) and wind up giving birth quite surprisingly. This is especially true if you have any attributes that can cause irregular or missed periods. If your physician was simply doing a regular exam and not doing a pregnancy exam, there would be no reason for your regular physician to know you are pregnant. Again, this is especially true if you are extremely overweight or suffer from PCOS. As to your OB/GYN, if your OB/GYN did a pap smear, depending in the medical testing, not sure how far along you were for your OB/GYN to do a pap smear to know if you are pregnant. Further, if your OB/GYN asked you if there is a possibility that you could be pregnant and you said no, he or she would have no cause to do further tests like pregnancy tests or blood tests. Even if one of them had not detected it, I don't believe your missed days of work could be attributed to them. Loss of job is not a foreseeable damage in your scenario. However, this is only a snippet of what probably occurred, so it wouldn't hurt you to discuss this with a lawyer you consult with to determine that even if there has been medical malpractice, if there is any sort of medical harm you suffered or economic or non economic damages.


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