Getting through surgery successfully is only part of the danger people face when they go into a hospital or other surgery center for a procedure. Surgical errors and post-surgical complications can be severe and even life-threatening. Indeed, some surgical mistakes may amount to a medical malpractice or wrongful death lawsuit.
About Surgical Errors
Surgical errors can be considered medical malpractice if it is determined a surgeon’s negligent conduct fell below the accepted standard of care. That care is evaluated by comparing it to the conduct of reasonably competent surgeons practicing that surgical focus under similar circumstances.
Many surgical mistakes are preventable. Although some may be the direct result of a surgeon’s incompetence, many also result from poor preoperative planning, inadequate procedures, or faulty work processes. Prior to any surgical procedure, patients may face a wide range of issues that can result in significant injuries, such as:
- Anesthesia mistakes
- Surgeon errors
- Harmful dyes and medications used in diagnostic tests
- Post-surgical complications, such as infection
- Failure of a surgeon, doctors, nurses, and hospital staff to protect a patient from post-op complications
- Insufficient or inadequate preoperative planning
- Miscommunication between doctors, nurses, and other staff
- Fatigued surgeons and support staff
- Under the influence or otherwise impaired surgeons and support staff
- Neglect, such as failure to sterilize instruments adequately or using defective surgical instruments
Any of the following injuries may result from a surgical error:
- Medication errors
- Complications from recovery
- Brain damage
- Spinal cord injury
- Heart attack
- Pulmonary embolism
- Damage to organs
- Severe bleeding
- Nicked arteries
- Incorrect incisions
- Amputation or surgery on a wrong body part or limb
- Operating on the wrong person
- Foreign object left in the body
Additionally, the equipment used in the surgery room is often the cause of many kinds of injuries to patients, including electrical shocks, burns, reactions to anesthesia, and reactions to contrast agents.
Protecting Victims of Surgical Error
Surgeries are often necessary due to auto accidents, heart problems, organ transplants, joint replacements, and other medical conditions. A medical malpractice attorney knows what to look for and how to build a successful case that identifies the negligence, error, or misconduct accurately.
If you have been the victim of an injury due to a surgical error or a complication after surgery, you should speak with a knowledgeable and experienced medical malpractice attorney. Malpractice lawyers handle cases involving surgical mistakes or negligence that lead to significant injury or harm. These are complex, sophisticated, and technical cases—you likely won’t want to rely on a general attorney who does not have a focus on medical malpractice.
When impaired judgments or careless mistakes lead to harm for you or a loved one, there isn’t time to delay. States have different statutes of limitations that prevent an injured patient from seeking fair compensation after a specified length of time. Therefore, you are well-advised to consult with a medical malpractice attorney, like a Philadelphia, PA medical malpractice lawyer, as soon as possible after you sustain surgery-related injury or harm.
Thanks to Wieand Law Firm, LLC for their insight into medical malpractice claims that are made due to surgical error.