My question involves medical malpractice in the state of: Virginia
So this morning I woke up and, long story short, my left ear was clogged with wax. I have a history of clogged ear canals, tubes, etc.
I decided to take some sick leave at work to cut out early and go see a doctor to get a cleaning (I had had this done before when I was young, and knew it was relatively routine), due to some elevated levels of discomfort.
I go to a walk-in clinic (I am from MI, but am currently in VA pursuing an internship, so I am away from my normal Doctor's office).
Everything seems to be going fine, the Doctor and nurse both comment on my crazy ear canals, lots of wax, etc. They say they will do a cleaning, and I agree.
One of the first things i notice is that the nurse appears a bit "inexperienced", and not like most nurses I have had before. There are several minor, and a few major factors that play into this deduction, and if you want me to get into the minor ones, I can.
So, for a quick reference, an ear cleaning involves a pre-application of some solution into the ear to soften the wax up, taking a vary large syringe (think "turkey baster") with a very tiny tip, filling it with a mix of Hydrogen Peroxide and water, and squirting the mixture into the ear. The high pressure, combined with the hydrogen peroxide, tends to remove most of the wax. The syringe seems very unweildly, and the nozzle size seems to require a practiced hand for proper application within the ear.
Regardless, my left ear is cleaned without a problem, and only once during the procedure was I in any discomfort, with a TINY bit of pain (I'm used to it with my convoluted canals) and i just shrugged it off.
Now something that really gets me is that after the procedure there is a bunch of "goop" in a medical tray (liquid used to dislodge wax, more wax, etc). The nurse, to my surprise, goes over to the sink and pours it out in the sink, then throws the plastic tray into the bio-hazard bin. That strikes me as a bit odd... There is also some manual cleanup that needed to be done, and again, the nurse removes some wax with an implement, and then rinses it off in the sink, and decides to use it again!
So, now my right ear is up for cleaning. The first application of the syringe HURT. The left ear is like a mosquito. This is like a hammer on your thumb. I tell the nurse to please be careful, remind her about my ear canals, ear tube removal, etc (all of which was thoroughly stated in the initial triage check), and to please tone it down on the next "squirt". The next squirt doesn't go so well. I feel pressure build and seemingly rip open my ear-drum. White hot pain sears through my head, like a 10/10 on the pain scale. I also get dizzy and fall back against the examination table. I am in excruciating pain, literally groaning and crying. The nurse runs to get the doctor, absolutely clueless as to what to do. She goes and gets "ice", as if its somehow going to help.
The doctor comes in and gives me some Ibuprofen about 45 seconds. I hear her say in the hallway to the nurse "Just give him like 10 minutes, he will be fine".
I basically sit there, lying down, trying to recover for about 15 minutes. I'm literally moaning, groaning, and crying the whole way. It hurt pretty dang bad. I never realized how bad your ear could hurt.
I finally think I can deal with the pain a bit, and get up, dizzy. I take a minute to orient myself, and then the doctor comes back into the room. She checks my ears, and of course without any delicateness jams her ear-checker-cone-device-thing (you know what I mean!) into my right ear, shooting another bolt of pain into my head. That being done, she says there is still wax, but they will hold off for now.
She then prescribes 3 days of Ibuprofen, and recommends some random ear cleaner over the counter solution. They say I am good to go, but if my ear still hurts tomorrow, to come back (making me wonder why she prescribed THREE days of pain meds?).
Unsure what to do about what just happened, I leave the clinic, feeling a bit confused and generally just wanting to get the heck out of there! My ear then remains in pain, maybe a 6/10 on the pain scale, to this very minute of typing this post.
I am unsure what to do, but I want to know if I have any grounds for a case in this situation.