To WIN YOUR CASE, You Need to Know: What are THEY Thinking?

What is the attorney's strategy?

How does a physician avoid malpractice?

Can the insurer prevent a large payout?

Does the employer face worker issues?
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Current Issue: September 2016
Stroke: Challenges, Risks, and Liability Issues

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Liability Risks Related to Stroke

About 800,000 people in the United States suffer a stroke each year and nearly 130,000 of these strokes result in death. Stroke is the fifth highest cause of death in the U. S., with someone dying of a stroke about every four minutes. Stroke also represents both the leading cause of disability and the leading preventable cause of disability in this country.


Stroke-related economic impact is over $34 billion a year, which includes the costs of health care services, the costs of medications to treat stroke, and the expenses attributable to missed days of work.


Patient injuries related to strokes can lead to claims of malpractice or negligence against physicians, hospitals, and other health care providers. This type of litigation may be based on claims related to a stroke resulting from an injury, a stroke induced by medication, a provider’s failure to recognize or treat a person who is about to have a stroke, or the negligent treatment of a person who is having a stroke.


Attorneys, physicians, hospitals, insurers, employers, and others at risk for liability should be aware of the types of litigation issues that may arise in connection with the diagnosis or treatment of stroke.

The Perspectives: Improve Your Strategy


What proof is needed to establish medical malpractice in the diagnosis or treatment of a stroke? And, what is a potential strategy for the attorney to employ?


How can liability for medical malpractice be avoided for a provider’s actions in diagnosing or treating a patient’s stroke? And, what is a potential strategy for the physician to employ?


Can a payout under a medical malpractice liability policy be avoided by proof that the health provider was not negligent or there was no coverage for the injury related to the patient’s stroke? And, what is a potential strategy for the insurer to employ? 


Can an employer be subject to liability for an employee’s stroke? And, what is a potential strategy for the employer to use?

Practice the Technique: Checklists


Check this list of facts and circumstances tending to show a provider’s liability for malpractice or negligence for a stroke-related injury.


Presented is a checklist of items a physician must consider when defending against claims of malpractice or negligence involving a stroke-related injury.


The insurer should check these “red flags” and inconsistencies when investigating a claim of stroke-related injury.


Use this checklist to determine if the employee’s stroke-related injury is “work related” and occurred “in the course of the employment.” 

Expert Analysis

Which Diagnostic Approaches and Treatment Pathways Are Suggested for Stroke?

Mitchell S. V. Elkind, MD, MS, FAAN, FAHA

When Can Stroke Claims Result in a Malpractice Action?

Matthew W. Sowell, JD

What Evidence is Needed to Prove a Malpractice Claim Involving Stroke?

Larry Wall, JD


Alternative Dispute Resolution

Arbitration or mediation may be required by contract or statute, may be mandated by the court or, in some circumstances, may be the appropriate method for a negotiated resolution.  

Reasons To Reach Settlement

The following are reasons why the attorney, physician, insurer, or employer would want to reach settlement, and not take the action to trial.

Reasons To Go To Trial

The following are reasons why the attorney, physician, insurer, or employer would want to take the action to trial.

Jury Awards and Settlements

How much have juries awarded and what settlements have been reached recently in cases involving stroke?

Medical Information


This section provides detailed medical information on strokes, the terminology used, risk factors, stroke prevention, causes of stroke, types and stages of stroke, warning signs and symptoms, and diagnosis and treatment. Also discussed are the patient’s prognosis and ability to work.

Law and Medicine Resources

Law and Medicine Resources

Provided is a listing of law and medical resources for further information on stroke.  

Medical Law Perspectives
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