Medical Malpractice/Autopsy Redux


Hello Mr. Friedman,

Thank you for taking the time to review my question.

My uncle recently passed away at a hospital. This follows what in my view was questionable treatment decisions made on the part of a physician with admitting privileges. When asked, the doctors have been vague about what caused his death. An autopsy was performed, however we do not yet know the results.

If my family decides to pursue a medical malpractice/wrongful death lawsuit against the hospital and the physician, is there any chance my uncle's body would need to be exhumed and another autopsy performed? Would a medical malpractice/wrongful death attorney recommend such a course of action if the autopsy results and/or the medical records are deemed altered or suspicious?

Thank you for any assistance you can provide me with this unfortunate situation.


I cannot answer for other attorneys; however, I would never have a body exhumed in this type of situation.  In a civil case, it is unlikely the court would order a body to be exhumed and I have never heard of this.

Very truly yours,

Paul D. Friedman, M.A., Ph.D., J.D.

Medical Malpractice

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Paul D. Friedman, M.A., Ph.D., J.D.


I have been a practicing civil trial attorney since 1989 dealing primarily with malpractice issues. I litigate very select medical malpractice cases on behalf of patients or their families. I am a Certified Civil Trial Specialist by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. I am also Certified in Injury and Wrongful Death by the Arizona State Bar Board of Legal Specialization.

In addition to my law degree, I received a Master of Arts in Bioethics and a Doctorate of Philosophy involving Medical Ethics. Because I am also an Adjunct Professor in Research and Medical Ethics at a medical school, I routinely consult with physicians and hospitals regarding medical ethics issues in an effort to improve patient care.

I can answer questions dealing with medical ethics principles. I can also respond to questions regarding potential malpractice issues.

For more information, you can view my website at WWW.EXPERTETHICS.COM


I have been a practicing trial attorney since 1989 and I have a masters degree in bioethics and a doctorate of philosophy regarding comparative ethics.

State Bar of Arizona
State Bar of Colorado (inactive)
District of Columbia Bar (inactive)
Federal Bar
Licensed in Arizona District Court
Licensed in Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
licensed in the United States Supreme Court
American Bar Association
National Board of Trial Advocacy
American Association for Justice
Arizona Trial Lawyers Association
American Society for Bioethics and Humanities
Kennedy Institute of Ethics
National Association of Realtors

A list of my copyrighted publications and presentations is contained at WWW.EXPERTETHICS.COM

Bachelor of Arts 1985
Juris Doctorate 1989
Master of Arts in Bioethics 2004
Doctorate of Philosophy 2006

Awards and Honors
Phi Beta Kappa
Multiple Who's Who
Southwest Superlawyers
Top 100 Trial Lawyers
AZ Magazine Top Lawyers

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