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Medical Malpractice Cases and Dr. Oz

Dr. Oz has become one of the world's most well-known physicians. The New York surgeon and TV personality has grown in popularity thanks to his TV show and many appearances on other day time shows like Oprah.

He explains a number of medical topics and often offers a variety of healthcare tips, some of which are questionable at best. For example, he once referenced a small, somewhat unreliable study that the intake of green coffee beans would help people lose up to 16 percent in body far, regardless if they worked out. People tried it, the results weren't what he had said. And he had to reiterate that more research was needed. So was that medical malpractice?

In another episode, Dr. Oz encouraged people to heat up rice filled socks in their microwave and place them on their feet as they went to bed. This was supposed to help people drift off to sleep faster. A 76-year-old man tried Dr. Oz's sleep trick and wound up suffering third-degree burns on his fee. Was that medical malpractice?

The man who suffered burns sued Dr. Oz for medical malpractice stating, "there were no proper instructions or proper warnings." The man said he didn't' realize how hot the socks were until he got up in the middle of the night and tried to walk. You see, the man suffered from diabetic neuropathy.

The victim lost his case. Ultimately, the judge believed that the victim's argument failed to meet one key requirement for medical malpractice: the physician-patient relationship. The judge ruled that there isn't currently a legal theory that creates a duty of care to a physician who looks into a camera and addresses an unseen audience.

Medical malpractice lawyers would have understood this ruling long before the case was filed. For there can be no medical malpractice without there first being a doctor-patient relationship.

Our recommendation, think twice before taking a TV doctor's advice. Should their advice cause your harm or damage, you won't be able to sue them for medical malpractice.