Loss of chance doctrine: An emerging theory of medical malpractice liability

Timothy Craig Allen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Traditional medical malpractice law requires plaintiffs, to be successful in a lawsuit, to show proximate cause, that is, to prove that the defendant physician's actions more likely than not caused the patient's injuries. The loss of chance doctrine views a person's prospect for surviving a serious medical condition as something of value, even if the possibility of recovery was less than 50%. The loss of chance doctrine is controversial, and both proponents and opponents have strong arguments regarding courts' instituting it in medical malpractice cases. These arguments, and the potential future of the theory in medical malpractice cases, are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)172-174
Number of pages3
JournalPathology Case Reviews
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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