Expert testimony is an essential component of Maryland medical malpractice cases. Specifically, as issues like the standard of care imposed on medical professionals and causation in the context of medical harm are beyond the understanding of the average person, medical experts are needed to help jurors gain the insight required to resolve the ultimate issues of the case. If an expert’s testimony is lacking, it may result in a dismissal of the plaintiff’s claims. In a recent Maryland medical malpractice opinion, a court discussed what constitutes sufficient expert testimony to support a verdict for the plaintiff. If you sustained losses due to the negligence of your doctor, you could be owed compensation, and you should speak to a Maryland medical malpractice lawyer promptly.
Factual and Procedural History
Allegedly, the plaintiff suffered from a uterine fibroid, which caused her significant pain. She underwent a myomectomy performed by the defendant, but her symptoms worsened. She visited an emergency room where testing showed signs of an infection. She subsequently underwent a second surgery, which showed she suffered a perforated colon. She returned to the hospital a week later for a third surgery in which it was revealed she had a perforated rectum as well.
It is reported that the plaintiff instituted a lawsuit against the defendant, alleging he committed medical malpractice. During the trial, the defendant moved for judgment in his favor as a matter of law on the grounds the plaintiff’s expert failed to establish causation. The court denied his motion, and the jury found in favor of the plaintiff. The defendant then renewed his motion and filed a motion to alter the judgment.
Sufficiency of Expert Testimony in Maryland Medical Malpractice Cases
In Maryland, the courts may be called upon to assess the sufficiency of expert testimony in medical malpractice cases after the jury has reached its verdict. In doing so, it will review the evidence in the light most favorable to the prevailing party. The courts should only issue judgment as a matter of law when they find that there is no legally adequate evidentiary basis for a jury to find in favor of a party on a certain issue.
In medical malpractice cases, expert testimony is needed to show negligence and causation, and the expert’s opinion on both the standard of care and causation must be expressed to a reasonable degree of medical certainty; otherwise, it may constitute mere speculation or conjecture. In the subject case, the court found that the plaintiff’s expert adequately opined on such issues; thus, it denied the defendant’s motion.
Consult a Skilled Maryland Attorney
Medical malpractice can cause significant and lasting harm, and physicians that negligently injure their patients should be held accountable. If you suffered injuries due to a negligently performed surgery, it is in your best interest to consult an attorney to discuss your potential claims. The skilled Maryland attorneys of Arfaa Law Group can assess the circumstances surrounding your harm and aid you in gathering the evidence needed to provide you with a strong chance of a favorable outcome. You can contact us through our online form or by calling us at (410) 889-1850 to set up a conference.