Can I sue if I had 2 seizures in the ER because they didn’t help me with a high blood pressure for over 4 hours? 1 Answers as of September 21, 2016

I walked into ER demanding help. I barely could see and suffered a headache. I told them that I was just discharged hours ago from a 5 day stay for a lupus infusion. Please help. They checked my blood pressure and it was 205/111. I, being a nurse and no prior hypertension problems, I shouted please help me and that I can have a stroke. The nurse stated not quite stroke yet and that they don’t have beds available right now. I vomited for hours, fell to floor and head was in pain. There was no nursing interventions. Blood pressure was never rechecked or nothing. Finally, they called me back, told me to stop crying and to be thankful. Even after being called, still no immediate assistance. I suffered more pain to head then abdomen. I begged for blood pressure pills or pain pills but was told doctor had to still see me. I knew the blood pressure was higher because headache was worse. Around after 7 am, I woke up to a busted lip and was told I had multiple seizures which I’ve never had. I told the doctor that if I got some type of help or nursing interventions, we could’ve avoided that. MRI later showed basically it was an acute short seizure. After being on seizure medicine for 2 days, I was taken off and never had another one. I look at nursing different since that day. I was mistreated and talk to as if I was a nobody. No matter why the blood pressure was high. Why weren’t they at least frequently monitor it until a doctor saw me?

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Of course you can sue. However (thanks to the doctor lobby) Med (and Dental) Mal cases are quite difficult. First, one must obtain a certification from an independent doctor that there was negligence. This is where the claim usually stops, as most lawyers will expect the client to cover the costs of this review/report (up to $5,000). Next, most malpractice insurance policies have a provision for approval of any settlement by the insured doctor. That doctor, human nature being what it is, will often refuse to approve any settlement, as he doesn't think he did anything wrong. Finally, there is a cap on how much can be awarded for pain and suffering, thus making these cases unattractive to lawyers. There are lawyers who specialize in Med Mal; your local bar association may be able to refer you to one.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 9/21/2016
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