Post Operative Infection

Postoperative Infection

Malpractice InfectionQuestion:

I had a major surgery on my right tibial plateau in 12/14. During post operative visits, my wife asked why one incision was not healing and the other was. My doctor said everyone heals differently.

At the end of March, I got real sick, staph infection in the incision and on the hardware in the right side of leg. I was rushed to surgery, third incision added, leg debridement, hardware removed. Due to this, I am on IV antibiotics for six weeks and my position at my job has been eliminated. If further investigation had occurred in February when my wife questioned slow healing, I would have been placed on a course of antibiotics and would not have lost my job.

Is this malpractice?

Download Our Free Medical Malpractice Guide


You must have two things for a malpractice claim:  substandard care and damages.  Everyone does heal differently and if there were no signs or symptoms of infection at the time that you were seen, then there is likely no deviation from the standard of care.  If you are diabetic or a smoker it can take longer for you to heal.  Patients get staph infections even with care that meets the industry standard.  However, the failure to diagnose or treat an infection can be actionable. Then again, the key is whether there were signs and symptoms which should have been acted upon.

This legal question was provided by Avvo and answered by Betsey Herd an experienced Tampa Medical Malpractice Lawyer.  This does not consent an attorney client relationship.