When pain in any part of the body lasts longer than six months, it is considered chronic. Chronic pain can be intermittent or ongoing, mildly annoying or incapacitating, mild or severe. Some people suffer with chronic pain due to an illness or infection, and other people suffer with chronic pain due to an injury.
It may be unusual in the minds of some for chronic pain to lead to a medical malpractice lawsuit, but in certain instances it can. At times, doctors will try to control chronic pain with narcotic pain relievers. This can lead to addiction in certain people and, if handled improperly, a medical malpractice lawsuit can result.
Recognizing Chronic Pain
Many people associate pain with chronic pain. It makes sense. What many may not associate with chronic pain are the other symptoms that may be present. These include fatigue, lack of energy, sleeplessness and general disability.
There is often no cure for chronic pain. Doctors may attempt to treat it or alleviate it slightly with psychotherapy, mediation therapy, surgery, electrical stimulation, acupuncture and more. In many instances, doctors will attempt to control chronic pain with prescription medication.
Addiction Due to Chronic Pain
Medication, especially opioids, should be the last thing that a patient relies on when trying to control chronic pain. This is because most of the medications used to combat chronic pain are narcotic in nature and highly addictive. Healthcare providers know that these medications can lead to addiction, and they struggle to control chronic pain in other ways.
Many patients become addicted to pain medications because their bodies become tolerant of their effects. This leads to a need for higher dosages and stronger prescriptions. Those with past substance abuse problems are more at risk for developing addiction, but anyone is susceptible.
Not all who become addicted to pain medications will have the legal grounds necessary for a successful medical malpractice lawsuit. A patient will need to show that they were not given any other options for treatment, that their doctor did not warn about potential side effects, that they followed their doctor’s instructions exactly, and that they were not aware of possible long-term affects. These are only some of the things that must be proven.
What it all means is that if you are suffering from an addiction to pain medication due to a prescription used to treat chronic pain, you may have the legal basis of a successful lawsuit. You may be able to secure the financial means to pay for rehabilitation services and more.
If you believe that you have suffered an addiction due to a doctor’s negligence, call our office. A member of our team will help you schedule an appointment for a free case evaluation where we will review the details of your case and advise you of your options. Call today or browse our website for more information about our firm and the types of cases we handle. Do not suffer with your addiction for one more day. Call now for assistance.