Legal Liability

A surgeon performs elective surgery on John Smith. Smith later complains to his surgeon about pain resulting from the surgery. His surgeon dismisses his complaints as not credible and eventually withdraws from the case. Smith is then treated by another surgeon, who determines that Smith developed complications from surgery and that the delay in treatment has made the complications worse. Smith sees an attorney about a possible lawsuit against the first surgeon. (Case Study, p.88)

Based upon the information above, describe at least two theories of liability that could support a lawsuit under these circumstances. Be sure to discuss each theory in detail and thoroughly explain the rational for your choices. What are the potential defenses and limitations of the liability theories you have chosen?

Guided Response: Review several of your classmates’ posts. Provide a substantive response to at least two of your peers, specifically, those who chose a different theory of liability than you did. How does the theory they selected also support a lawsuit in this case? Did they support their choice with adequate reasoning? Would another theory be more or less appropriate, in your opinion?

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