5 trends in neurosurgical medical malpractice cases

Written by Shayna Korol | August 22, 2018 | Print  |

Compared to other specialists, neurosurgeons are most likely to face medical malpractice claims, according to an analysis published in World Neurosurgery.

Researchers conducted a comprehensive analysis of 343 neurosurgery malpractice cases from 1985 to 2015 using the Westlaw legal research service. Neurosurgeons were cited as defendants in 21.1 percent of cases.

Here are five trends in neurosurgery medical malpractice claims:

1. A defendant's verdict was reached in 48.1 percent of cases while v plaintiff's verdict occurred in 27.1 percent of cases. Settlements were decided in 23.6 percent of cases.

2. For plaintiff's verdicts, the median payout was $2.55 million.

3. For settlements, the median payout was $1.3 million.

4. The most commonly cited reasons for litigation included:

  • Procedural error: 45.5 percent
  • Failure to diagnose: 41.4 percent
  • Failure to treat: 42.9 percent       

5. For pediatric cases, the median plaintiff award payout was $10.1 million. Large payouts were also common in cerebrovascular cases.

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