Radioactive brachytherapy is a medical technique in which radioactive “seeds” are implanted directly into the prostrate of individuals being treated for prostate cancer. This procedure is an accepted technique for the treatment of early–state prostate cancer. Using this technique, the radioactive “seeds” are placed a short distance from the tumor or the prostate or they may be placed directly in the tumor. The procedure is designed to kill cancer cells and shrink the tumors in the prostate. To implant the seeds in or near the tumor, special needles are inserted into the prostate gland and ultrasound imaging is used to ensure that each seed is implanted correctly. If the seeds are not implanted correctly, the individual could receive too much or too little rational treatment. This could cause serious health complications for the individual. Individuals that have been subjected to radioactive brachytherapy techniques that have not been carried out properly by their physician may have a valid medical malpractice claim.
When radioactive brachytherapy techniques are not correctly administered, the patient’s prostate cancer may be allowed to progress or the individual may experience other health complications.
Individuals expect for their physicians to provide them with the best medical care possible, and they also expect the physician will be competent and able to perform necessary medical procedures. Because radioactive brachytherapy is used to treat early–stages of prostate cancer, any failure to properly treat the cancer in its early stages could allow the cancer to progress and affect other organs. When physicians fail to properly perform medical procedures or medical techniques such as radioactive brachytherapy and the individual suffers an injury as a result, the physician may be held liable for medical malpractice. Individuals that have been victims of medical malpractice may be eligible to receive damages from their health care providers for their medical expenses and physical and mental anguish.
Physicians carrying out radioactive brachytherapy techniques usually have the assistance visual aids such as x–rays, ultrasound, CT scans, and other imaging tests to ensure that the “seeds” are properly implanted in the prostate gland or tumor. For these “seeds” to be improperly implanted and for the physician not to be aware of this fact until the patient experiences further health problems associated with the “seed” placement, one could assume that the physician did not take advantage of the visual aids available to him or her. The failure to implant the “seeds” properly and the failure to ensure the “seeds” were implanted properly by using available visual aids would indicate negligence on the part of the physician. This negligence could lead to a medical malpractice lawsuit in which the victim could be awarded monetary compensation for their injuries.