Thanks for the chance to help. I am an attorney with over 12 years experience. Hopefully I can help you with your legal question.
In response to your question
"do I have a case against UCLA Harbor Hospital or are they too big of an organization that it would be impossible to sue them?"
It is not the size of the hospital...at all. The issue is "can you prove negligence
The size of the hospital is not significant...even the smallest hospitals and sole practitioner doctors have insurance that will pay lawyers to defend malpractice claims.
Lets back up...
To successfully sue for medical malpractice, you must meet four part test:
1. A duty was owed - a legal duty exists whenever a hospital or health care provider undertakes care or treatment of a patient. They have a "duty" to treat you with "due care". This is typically easy to prove.
2. The duty was breached - the provider failed to conform to the relevant standard of care. The standard of care is proved by expert testimony or by obvious errors (the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur or 'the thing speaks for itself'). This is often the tough part...since you have to prove, with expert testimony, that, basically, the doctor messed this up...that they were "negligent".
3. The breach caused or aggravated an injury - The breach of duty was a proximate cause of the injury. If you can show they messed up, its often easy to the next step...that the mess up caused the injury. Not always, each case is different, but certainly if you can show they messed it up, you are well on your way to show that the mistake caused the injury.
4. Damages - Without damages (losses which may be pecuniary or emotional), there is no basis for a claim, regardless of whether the medical provider was negligent.
This is often the second hardest part to prove, since you need to have serious injury to convince an attorney to bring the case.
Based on your description, it appears you may indeed have a case. If you can show that the doctor misdiagnosed the seriousness of the condition (that it surgery would need to be conducted quickly) OR that the hospital was negligent in getting you in for the procedure in a timely fashion? AND that the delay caused your current medical problems, you would have a strong case.
That second part is key...it is clear you were delayed...you have to show BOTH that the provider (doctor or hospital or both) delayed this improperly AND that the delay resulted in complications that has left you in a much worse position than you would have been had they conducted the operation in a timely manner.
I understand you have spoken to one attorney...you may want to try several more.
What you describe it sounds like there may have been improper delay...you would need to have an attorney and a doctor (the attorney will be the one to provide the records to a doctor) review the medical records to see if you have a case worth brining.
What I mean by this is you need to prove damages enough to warrant the case. Malpractice suits are expensive to fight...so unless there is clear evidence of malpractice and clear evidence of harm to you, it may be you have a case, but it not worth filing (since in order to file the case the attorney will want to be compensated...they need a case worth tens of thousands of dollars to start)