Medical Malpractice Lawyers in Buffalo, Rochester, and Syracuse, NY

When you are ill or injured, it is important to seek care from a trained medical professional. Patients place an enormous amount of trust in their doctors and other caregivers.

These medical experts are responsible for the well-being and safety of their patients. Sadly, trust in some medical professionals is misplaced.

When a doctor, nurse or other medical provider behaves negligently and harms a patient, it is known as “medical malpractice.”

Unfortunately, medical malpractice happens often in the United States. One recent study found that medical errors are the third leading cause of death nationwide.

If you or someone you love has been affected by a medical provider’s negligence, consult with medical malpractice lawyers as soon as possible.  Medical malpractice claims are among the most difficult cases to evaluate, litigate, and ultimately prove at trial.  The legal team at Lipsitz, Ponterio & Comerford, LLC, has the skills and experience necessary to handle any type of medical malpractice case.

Victims of medical malpractice deserve the best representation possible from trustworthy and knowledgeable medical malpractice attorneys.

Understanding Medical Malpractice

Medical malpractice occurs when a medical care professional makes a mistake that causes harm to a patient. When a medical care provider gives substandard, faulty, or negligent treatment, it qualifies as an instance of medical malpractice.

Medical Malpractice Lawyers in Buffalo, NY Lipsitz, Ponterio & Comerford

However, not every instance of medical error will result in a successful medical malpractice case. That is why it is so vital to speak with a qualified legal professional as soon as possible, in order to have each case properly evaluated.

In order to succeed with a medical malpractice claim, you must prove that the medical provider failed to practice what is referred to as the “standard of care.”  This refers to the general standard of practice for a reasonable practitioner in a particular area of medicine.

Unfortunately, just showing that you suffered a bad result from a medical treatment or procedure is not sufficient to meet this burden.  To succeed, the injured victim must prove that the medical provider did something a reasonable physician would not have done, or failed to do something a reasonable physician would have done.

If a departure from the “standard of care” is established, then it must also be established that the mistake or error proximately caused the patient’s injury.  Proving a departure from the “standard of care” but failing to prove causation will result in the plaintiff losing at trial.

The four elements of medical malpractice cases are:

Duty of Care

When a doctor-patient relationship exists, the medical care professional has a duty to provide a reasonable standard of care. They are required to take the actions of a reasonable, competent, and trained medical professional.

Physicians, nurses, and surgeons have specialized training. Because of this, they are expected to take informed actions to promote the patient’s health and well-being.

Claimants must show that they had a doctor-patient relationship with the medical care provider in question. In most cases, it is simple for injured patients to prove that this type of relationship existed.

Breach of Duty

Each medical care professional must provide the same quality of care that a similarly trained medical professional would offer in that particular situation. If their care fell below the accepted professional standard, they may be the subject of a medical malpractice claim.

Typically, this element is the crux of a medical malpractice case. An experienced medical malpractice attorney will explore the circumstances of your situation to explore the strength of this claim.

When you consult with skilled medical malpractice lawyers, they will determine whether another doctor would have made the same mistake. If not, your medical care provider may be held liable for medical malpractice.

Actual Harm

Not every medical mistake qualifies as medical negligence or malpractice. To qualify, the patient must prove that the medical professional’s mistake resulted in actual harm.

If the correct diagnoses would have resulted in the same treatment, no harm has been done to the patient. This would not qualify as an instance of medical malpractice.

This element of medical malpractice cases can be complex. These cases often involve claimants who already suffered from injuries or illnesses.  In these instances, it can be complicated to prove that the doctor’s mistakes were the direct cause of the harm to the patient.

In a successful medical malpractice case, the plaintiff must show that their doctor’s mistake resulted in actual harm.

Quantifiable Damages

Finally, the claimant in a medical malpractice case must show that their damages are quantifiable. That is, they must show that financial recovery is appropriate compensation for the harms that they suffered.

Some of the most common examples of damages in medical malpractice cases include compensation for:

  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Mental anguish like stress, anxiety, and panic
  • Increased medical costs and expenses
  • Lost wages and missed income
  • Long-term decreased earning capacity

To determine whether you have a strong claim, reach out to the medical malpractice lawyers at Lipsitz, Ponterio & Comerford, LLC. Our skilled personal injury attorneys know what it takes to recover significant compensation for the victims of medical malpractice.

Common Examples of Medical Malpractice Cases

Every instance of medical negligence involves a distinct set of circumstances. Still, some types of medical malpractice arise more often than others.

Some of the most common examples of medical negligence include:

Failure to Properly Diagnose

Improper diagnoses are some of the most common medical errors. This type of mistake can happen when a doctor fails to diagnose an ongoing medical condition.

A medical professional may fail to diagnose the condition altogether or may simply fail to diagnose in a reasonable amount of time. This can cause the patient to miss out on certain opportunities for treatments.

Misdiagnoses can also occur when the medical professional offers a diagnosis that is incorrect. When a misdiagnosis leads to the patient undergoing inappropriate treatments, they may suffer harm.

To bring a medical malpractice claim based on a misdiagnosis, the claimant must show that another medical professional would have reasonably handled the case differently.

Errors Involving Medication

Each year in the United States, thousands of people suffer harm as the result of medication errors. These medical mistakes can happen from the time a medicine is prescribed until it is administered.


For instance, the doctor may have prescribed the wrong medication as the result of a misdiagnosis, or the doctor may have prescribed a medication intended for a different purpose.

Other common medical errors involving prescription medications include:

  • Wrong dosage written on the prescription
  • Mistakes in the administration of the dosage by a nurse
  • Equipment malfunctions that cause dosage errors

In a hospital setting, errors may occur when medication is administered to the wrong patient. This can happen as the result of errors in medical records.

Surgical Errors

If you have undergone surgery and suffered harm as a result, consult with medical malpractice lawyers at Lipsitz, Ponterio & Comerford. In some cases, damage can happen as the result of a surgeon’s negligence during the procedure.

For instance, a surgeon may:

  • Damage internal organs or parts of the body
  • Administer the wrong procedure to the patient
  • Leave instruments or equipment inside the patient’s body

Not every instance of a surgical error happens during the procedure. For instance, nurses and other providers might be negligent in their post-operative care, as well.

This type of negligence can result in dangerous health consequences, including severe infections.

Errors Involving Anesthetics

Mistakes involving anesthesia can be even more dangerous than standard surgical mistakes. Even minor miscalculations by an anesthesiologist have the potential to cause lasting harm to the patient.

Common anesthesia errors happen when the healthcare specialist:

  • Fails to survey the patient’s medical history
  • Does not inform the patient of potential risks and hazards
  • Administers too much anesthetic
  • Fails to adequately monitor vital signs
  • Makes an error administering intubation
  • Uses defective medical equipment

Some of these errors can occur before the anesthesia is administered. Because of the power of anesthetics, errors can result in lifelong injuries, traumatic brain damage, and death.

No matter what kind of medical malpractice caused your injuries, you deserve justice. Reach out to the skilled medical malpractice lawyers at Lipsitz, Ponterio & Comerford, LLC to explore your legal options.

Statute of Limitations on Medical Malpractice Claims

Like most states, New York has placed a statute of limitations on medical malpractice claims. A “statute of limitations” is a legal time limit by which injury victims must file a lawsuit in order to preserve their legal rights.

Under New York state law, medical negligence victims have two-and-a-half years to file a lawsuit for damages. In the majority of cases, this legal time limit begins on the day when you became injured due to medical malpractice. However, the calculation of the statute of limitation can be complicated in some medical malpractice cases. Under the doctrine of “continuous care,” if the damage happened because of a long-term course of treatment, the two-and-a-half-year period of time to file a lawsuit begins on the last date of your course of treatment.  Due to the complicated nature of computing the appropriate statute of limitations, it is critical to speak with medical malpractice lawyers as soon as you realize that you have been injured or become ill.

Legal Representation with Lipsitz, Ponterio & Comerford, LLC

When you need legal representation in the Buffalo, NY area, look no further than the firm of Lipsitz, Ponterio & Comerford, LLC. Our accomplished medical malpractice lawyers have a well-established track record of successfully representing victims of medical malpractice.

Patients should be able to trust that their medical providers are providing a reasonably safe and effective level of care. When you have been injured because of a medical provider’s carelessness, you deserve significant financial compensation for the harm that you have suffered.

If you or a loved one has been injured due to medical malpractice, please contact us for a free and confidential evaluation. Lipsitz, Ponterio & Comerford, LLC is ready to fight for you.

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