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Every 40 seconds, someone in the United States suffers a stroke. With symptoms being wide-ranging, physicians may miss obvious warning signs. Even a delay in diagnosing a stroke can result in permanent disabilities.

If you have questions regarding a physician’s negligent failure to diagnose a stroke, you are not alone. Our legal team has 30 years of experience helping stroke victims and is prepared to advocate for the compensation you deserve.

Strokes and Transient Ischemic Attacks

A stroke occurs when blood flow is reduced or blocked to the brain. It is a life-threatening emergency that requires immediate medical attention to increase the likelihood of survival. If a stroke is caused by a blood clot, the patient may benefit from a clot-busting drug known as tissue plasminogen activator, or tPA. However, it is recommended that tPA be administered within a limited period of time of the onset of symptoms.

Some people have transient ischemic (TIA) attacks, also referred to as “mini-strokes.” Although the attacks are usually brief, it is a warning sign that the individual is at risk of having a stroke. A TIA is no less serious than a stroke, and medical intervention should be sought immediately.

Signs of a Stroke

Common signs of a stroke may include any of the following:

  • Numbness or weakness (usually on one side of the body)
  • Sudden confusion
  • Speech difficulties
  • Vision problems in one or both eyes
  • Trouble walking
  • Loss of balance or coordination
  • Dizziness
  • Sudden onset severe headache

Failure or Delay in Diagnosis

The signs of a stroke are similar to other medical conditions, causing many physicians to misdiagnose a stroke. By ordering an MRI or CT scan, a physician can diagnose and treat a stroke before it progresses any further. Adequate testing and blood tests will reveal a stroke or TIA, ruling out an infection, drug interaction, or brain tumor.

If treatment is delayed, there is a greater chance that more neurological damage will occur, resulting in long-term disability and death. Medical professionals should not go unpunished for deviating below the acceptable standard of care.

Compensatory Damages

If you or a loved one suffered permanent injuries as a result of a medical professional’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation in the form of damages. Compensatory damages come in two forms: economic (losses that result in a financial loss) and non-economic (losses that impact a person’s quality of life).

Economic losses may include:

  • Surgeries and treatments
  • Hospital stay
  • Rehabilitative equipment
  • Lost income
  • Loss of future earnings

You may also be entitled to non-economic losses, which may include:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress
  • Loss of companionship
  • Loss of consortium
  • Negligent infliction of emotional distress (NIED)

Is There a Limit on Medical Malpractice Damages?

While damages vary from state to state, Article III, section 18 of the Pennsylvania Constitution prohibits caps on “…the amount to be recovered for injuries resulting in death, or injuries to persons or property…” Although the constitution stipulates no limit on either economic or non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases, punitive damages are limited to twice the amount of compensatory damages.

Contact Us for Medical Malpractice Representation in Harrisburg PA

An individual who is suffering from stroke symptoms requires immediate care. If you or a loved one did not receive adequate care, our legal team is ready to help. To schedule a legal consultation, please call the office at (717) 234-7828 or contact us online today.