- In accidents
Injury to arteries in the neck due to chiropractic manipulations is estimated to occur between 1 in every 100,000 manipulations to 1 in every 6,000,000 manipulations. However, because patients often will not report minor symptoms of arterial injury, the estimates are believed to be higher than the lowest of the two estimates. These artery injuries carry a risk of a stroke occurring.
A study examining medical malpractice cases against chiropractors found that chiropractic neck manipulations resulting in injury to the C5 – C6 disks in the neck was the most common injury among cases filed from 1998 to 2018.
What Is The Statute Of Limitations For Chiropractic Malpractice In California?
Under California law, a medical malpractice claim must be filed within one year of discovering the injury or within three years of the injury occurring, whichever occurs first. The time limit on these claims is known as a statute of limitations. In practical terms, if you experience an injury due to a chiropractor’s malpractice, you have three years to file a claim for your injuries. Alternatively, if the injury were discovered later, then you would have one year from the date of discovering the injury to file your claim.
The claim will usually be dismissed if it falls outside these time constraints. These critical limitations are why you should reach out to an attorney as soon as you believe something is amiss.
Steps To Take If You Believe Malpractice Has Occurred
If you believe that your injuries resulted from sub-standard medical care, then malpractice may have occurred. Your first step should be to contact a medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible.
Not only will an experienced attorney inform you of your options, but they can help inform you of other important steps in documenting your injuries. Some steps to take to maximize your claim’s chances of success include:
- Take pictures or visually document injuries, if possible
- Write and record your memories and experiences during the adjustment or procedure
- Obtain and organize medical bills
- Including any appointments, second opinions, or follow-up visits
- Obtain and organize relevant medical records
- An attorney can help you to better understand what medical records would be helpful for your claim
- Document your insurance policy and other insurance records
- Document and record any missed work or other financial burdens related to your injury
- Avoid posting to social media until you have consulted with an attorney
Other Forms Of Chiropractic Malpractice
Although injuries from manipulation are one form of sub-standard care that may be rendered by chiropractors, other forms of negligence also exist. Other forms of potential malpractice by chiropractors include:
- Not conducting an appropriate examination before manipulation
- Failing to order diagnostic imaging before manipulation
- Not referring you to another medical professional when necessary
- Conducting an inadequate physical examination
- Failing to consider medical history
- Not providing or allowing for discussions regarding treatment options
These forms of negligence are typically actionable under certain circumstances. They are deviations from the standard of care or are actions that are required by law, meaning that a chiropractor who doesn’t follow them correctly is likely to have breached a duty of care to patients.
California’s Limitation On Medical Malpractice Damages
It is worth noting that California has a cap on non-economic damages recovered in medical malpractice cases. An example of non-economic damages would be monetary awards for pain and suffering. Conversely, economic damages are financial damages that can be directly shown. Examples of economic damages would include medical bills and lost wages. Economic damages are not capped.
New legislation in California limits the non-economic damage cap at $350,000 for cases not involving wrongful death claims and $500,000 for cases involving wrongful death claims.
Contact A Knowledgeable Personal Injury Attorney
As accomplished personal injury attorneys, Law Offices of Samer Habbas & Associates have the experience and expertise to solve problems for clients and achieve the best possible results. For more information or to schedule a complimentary consultation, please call 888-848-5084 or contact us online.
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