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Medical Problem-Part 2

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My husband had total knee replacement surgery (see earlier post-"Medical Problem") in Dec. 98. Knee has never been right, swollen and painful. He went back to original surgeon, who drained fluid from knee and told him he had staph infection. Did not subscribe antibiotics. With no health insurance now, he let it go at that. We then went to VA hospital (husband is Vet), where they took blood, drained knee fluid again, and took x-rays. The ortho doctor at VA told us (after looking at x-rays) that the prosthesis "doesn't fit", was never put in tight enough. Do we have a case against the original surgeon? He should have known after looking at x-rays that the problem was serious. My husband will now have to undergo total knee replacement, again and is now on antibiotics prescribed by VA doctors.



I am answering somewhat in the dark since I don't know what state you live in. Every state has different time lines in which to sue someone (called Statutes of Limitation). I am also hampered since I have not handled medical malpractice suits before. Nonetheless, charging in where angels fear to tread, I would opine that you don't have a legal right to sue the original surgeon since you waited too long. That is to say, I would guess that the applicable Statute of Limitations was one year from the date of the original operation.

Even if you could sue the original doctor, you yourself (in the earlier post) stated a good defense that the surgeon would use. Namely; that there was no negligence. This particular problem only occurs in 1% or less of all patients. Right?

Hopefully some other attorney will offer their professional opinion here. Plus, you can certainly contact a medical malpractice attorney near you by finding one at attorneypages.com.

Mark B. Replogle

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