3 MIN READ | Mental Health

Tommy Williamson

How to Deal with Emotional Trauma Caused by Medical Malpractice

Cite This
Tommy Williamson, (2021, January 7). How to Deal with Emotional Trauma Caused by Medical Malpractice. Psychreg on Mental Health. https://www.psychreg.org/trauma-medical-malpractice/
Reading Time: 3 minutes

When you give yourself over to the care of a doctor or medical facility, you likely do so assuming they will keep you safe from harm or trauma. Unfortunately, though, it isn’t uncommon for patients to suffer damages at the hands of their health care practitioners. When this occurs, they don’t just have to deal with the financial burden associated with managing their new injuries – they’re also forced to face and overcome significant emotional trauma associated with the accident. 

If you were involved in a situation like this and think you may want to sue a Kentucky hospital for your damages, consult the guide below, which provides greater insight into understanding how pain and suffering might play a role in your claim. 

How does medical malpractice cause emotional trauma?

Any kind of dangerous or life-altering incident can have prolonged emotional effects. But these symptoms are especially prevalent when the incident is brought on by the recklessness or carelessness of another party, and even more so when that party was entrusted to ensure your care and safety.

After medical malpractice, you might find yourself weary or fearful of doctors, nurses, dentists, or any professional designed to administer medical care. This is understandable; after all, the last time you did so, you suffered damages, so it’s reasonable to have a fear of falling into the same situation.

Survivors of medical malpractice might also develop posttraumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. Symptoms might include changes in mood or behaviour, such as increased irritability or anger, severe anxiety, flashbacks that illicit panic, insomnia or difficulty sleeping, emotional detachment, and unwanted thoughts. You could experience these side effects due to a trigger, such as hearing a song that was playing before you went into your operation. Or, they might come on out of nowhere; the unpredictability of the condition is part of what makes it so difficult for survivors to manage. 

Finally, there’s the emotional trauma that comes with managing a new way of life after a medical malpractice accident. If your damages are severe enough that they prevent you from working or engaging in hobbies you previously enjoyed, you might find yourself feeling depressed or anxious. It’s common for individuals in this circumstance to experience decreased self-esteem, increased irritability, a desire to self-isolate, and ongoing frustration. All of these symptoms are brought on by the fact that they are now forced to create a new way of life because another person didn’t exhibit due diligence and proper care. 

What is the best way to deal with emotional trauma after medical malpractice?

Although emotional trauma can be difficult and frustrating, there are resources available to make it easier. First, consider enrolling in therapy. Working with a licensed professional will allow you to better understand your triggers, symptoms, and condition. With this new knowledge, you can devise a treatment plan that helps you cope and move forward.

It’s also recommended you work with a reputable medical malpractice lawyer to file a suit against the responsible party or parties. This will provide you with the financial resources needed to ensure to fully recover. This may include having medical bills covered associated with treating any physical damages sustained, as well as having expenses associated with your emotional treatment paid for. By alleviating the financial burdens associated with your medical malpractice, you’ll be able to better devote your time and energy toward addressing any emotional trauma sustained as a result. 

If you were the victim of medical malpractice, it’s important to remember there are resources available to you. By working with a knowledgeable attorney and prioritising your recovery, you can move forward to addressing your emotional trauma. 


Tommy Williamson did his degree in psychology at the University of Edinburgh. He has an ongoing interest in mental health and well-being.


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