If you are facing an eye issue that you need help with, you may choose to see an optometrist or an ophthalmologist for help. These doctors specialize in eye care and can likely treat your condition and help you. However, in order to properly help you with an eye condition, the doctor needs to do several things. One of those things is to provide the opportunity for you to have informed consent when you are making decisions about your treatment options. You can learn more about informed consent or lack thereof on this page.
What is Lack of Informed Consent?
Before you are even examined by an eye doctor or another type of doctor, you will likely have to sign an informed consent form. But what does this actually mean? As a patient, you have the right to know:
- When you have been diagnosed with a medical issue and what the medical problem is.
- The treatment that the doctor is contemplating.
- The likelihood of the treatment’s success.
- Any potential risks that go along with the treatment plan.
- A prognosis if you do not decide to go through with the treatment that is recommended.
- Alternative treatment options for your eye condition.
If you are not informed of any of the above things by your doctor, you may argue that you were not properly informed and therefore could not give your consent. Informed consent is important in the event of an issue arising from your diagnosis or treatment. If you were not properly informed about your condition and the course of action, and it turns out that you were misdiagnosed or the treatment was not the proper treatment option, the doctor could be liable for negligence in your situation.
For example, consider that a doctor tells you that you have cataracts and suggests that you get surgery to remove them, but does not discuss the possible negative side effects of the surgery or any of the other treatment options available to you. How can you properly agree to the surgery if you do not understand the risks or other options that might be more suitable to your lifestyle? If something goes wrong, you can argue that you were not informed of these consequences and that you would have made a different choice had you been properly informed.
Lack of Informed Consent Cases
If you want to make a medical malpractice claim because of your lack of informed consent, you have to prove two things. First, you need to prove that you were not informed of the treatment recommended and that this treatment caused you harm. You also need to prove that had you been made aware of the treatment and the potential consequences, you would have declined this treatment option.
If you can prove these things, you can likely sue for medical malpractice based on lack of informed consent. If this is something that you are considering, contact my office for more information. I am happy to review your case with you and help you determine the best way for you to proceed.