We undergo medical treatment with the expectation that it will heal us or guard against further harm. However, it’s important to understand that there is not a consensus regarding which medical treatments are safe and appropriate. There are some treatments currently being used in modern medicine that have been the subject of controversy due to their potential to put the safety of patients at risk.
The following are among the more noteworthy. If you believe you’ve been harmed as a result of undergoing an unsafe medical treatment, strongly consider reviewing your case with an attorney. You may have grounds to seek compensation for your losses by filing a medical malpractice claim or lawsuit.
Electroshock therapy is the informal name for electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). This treatment is typically used to treat patients with such conditions as major depression. Medical care providers usually resort to ECT when other forms of treatment have proven to be ineffective.
ECT involves passing electrical currents through a patient’s brain via electrodes. When ECT was first being used to treat patients, it wasn’t uncommon for the levels of electricity being passed through the brain to be unreasonably high. Patients may also have been provided with minimal anesthesia, or even none at all.
Some of these issues have been corrected. However, there are still instances when this treatment can result in severe side effects.
Trepanation began as an early form of neurosurgery in the age before modern medicine. It involves drilling a hole into the skull of a patient.
Although rare, this procedure is sometimes still performed in an attempt to address cranial swelling. It may also provide surgeons with access to tumors that need to be removed. Instead of calling it trepanation, they now refer to the procedure as a craniotomy.
Unfortunately, this treatment has been found to leave some patients with disabilities. It can serve a purpose, but it may also cause harm.
The practice of circumcising a child when they are too young to consent to such a procedure has become increasingly controversial in recent years. Although some regard circumcision as a religious necessity, others argue that putting a child through such pain when there is little medical reason to do so is improper. There are also some who suggest that circumcision has the potential to cause such problems as reduced sensitivity.
If you aren’t familiar with the term bariatric surgery, that’s because it’s becoming more common to refer to it simply as “weight loss surgery” or “gastric bypass surgery.” It’s a procedure that’s meant to help patients lose weight by removing portions of their stomachs.
Research indicates this procedure has a relatively high potential to cause complications. Some studies indicate that as many as one in 50 patients who undergo bariatric surgery die within 30 days of having the surgery.
There are those who argue that patients who undergo this surgery are making a personal choice. Still, it’s important that they be thoroughly informed of the risks the surgery involves before making a decision.
Not everyone would consider a tonsillectomy to be a controversial treatment. Many have undergone this procedure in an attempt to guard against further cases of acute tonsillitis. Others may undergo it to treat sleep apnea.
That said, some experts argue that there is minimal evidence the treatment is actually effective. They argue that it only causes unnecessary pain. It’s also been linked to significant weight gain in children.
If you’ve been harmed as a result of any of these treatments, you might be eligible for compensation. Just understand that these types of cases are often very complex. Issues such as the difference between express and implied consent can influence whether a victim will recover compensation for their losses.
This highlights the importance of consulting with an attorney if you’re not sure whether you should take legal action. A lawyer will help you better understand your options. If you do have reason to file a claim or lawsuit, they will also help you build a strong case.