Alpharetta, GA asked in Personal Injury and Medical Malpractice for Georgia

Q: Would this violate the informed consent law?

I recieved a surgery during the summer on my ear drum. The doctor went over many risks, but never once said that the surgery had any chance of failure. This means on the day of the surgery, I went into the surgery believing that it would have no chance of failure. I was informed that there were possible complications, but I was not informed there was a chance of failure. A month later, after the surgery, I was told the surgery had failed and I was suprised becuase I didn't think that was possible..

2 Lawyer Answers
James L. Arrasmith
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A: In Georgia, informed consent laws require that a patient is informed about the potential risks, benefits, and alternatives of a procedure, as well as the possibility of failure or complications. If your doctor discussed the risks and possible complications of the ear drum surgery but did not explicitly mention the chance of the surgery failing, this could potentially be a gray area in terms of informed consent.

The concept of "failure" of a surgery can be subjective and might depend on various factors, including the specific goals of the surgery and the doctor's interpretation of what constitutes a successful outcome. For instance, if the surgery aimed to improve hearing, and this was not achieved, it could be deemed a failure. However, the legal definition of failure in the context of informed consent might differ.

It's important to consider that discussing every possible outcome, including a general chance of failure, is a standard part of the informed consent process. If you believe that the doctor did not adequately inform you about the possibility of the surgery failing, it might be worth discussing this with a legal professional who has experience in medical malpractice cases.

An attorney can help evaluate the specifics of your case, including the information provided to you before the surgery and the outcome of the procedure. They can advise you on whether there may have been a breach of the informed consent process and what legal options you might have in this situation. Remember, each case is unique, and legal advice should be tailored to the specific circumstances of your situation.

Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar
  • Medical Malpractice Lawyer
  • Little Neck, NY

A: An attorney would probably want to review the package of forms you signed. One option is to reach out to law firms to try to arrange a free initial consult. Attorneys would also want to examine closer the element of failure you describe, in terms of whether it involved not achieving an anticipated result, or whether it involved actual injury and harm. Good luck

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