I’m working on a case now for a client who almost died from a surgery that she didn’t need in the first place. Our investigation uncovered that her surgeon never had a true informed consent conversation with her. If he had done so, there was no way she would have agreed to proceed with surgery.
Informed consent means the doctor must give enough information to the patient for the patient to consent, or give permission, for the treatment or surgery. This information includes presenting the risks and benefits of all options:
· The risks and benefits of each proposed treatment.
· The risks and benefits of doing nothing.
Under Texas law, obtaining informed consent is a duty of the physician and no one else. In other words, it isn’t a responsibility that the doctor can delegate to a nurse.
Two types of Texas consent lawsuits
When a patient has concerns about consent, then the appropriate thing to do is consult with an experienced Texas medical malpractice lawyer.
If the doctor treated or operated on a patient with no consent whatsoever, the lawsuit cause of action is medical battery. Even a doctor can not touch or treat a person without permission.
If the patient contends that the doctor didn’t have an adequate conversation about the risks and benefits of surgery, then the lawsuit cause of action is for failure to obtain informed consent. The plaintiff must prove that if the physician had given all the information required by Texas informed consents law (options, risks, and benefits), then a reasonable person would not have given consent or permission for the treatment or surgery.
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Robert Painter is an award-winning medical malpractice attorney at Painter Law Firm PLLC, in Houston, Texas. He is a former hospital administrator who represents patients and family members in medical negligence and wrongful death lawsuits all over Texas.