Anyone who undergoes a surgical procedure is likely to be concerned about their health and safety since complications can occur even when an operation is completed correctly. Unfortunately, complications and long-lasting injuries become much more likely when errors are made by doctors, nurses, or other medical staff members during a procedure. In many cases, surgical errors are considered medical malpractice. Those who have suffered these types of injuries will want to understand how they can receive financial compensation for the damages they have suffered as a result of the negligence of surgeons or other medical personnel.
Five Common Surgical Errors
Surgical errors can occur for a variety of reasons. Doctors or nurses may fail to follow the correct procedures when preparing for surgery or performing a procedure, or they may make mistakes during a procedure that cause harm to a patient. Some of the most common surgical errors include:
- Operating on the wrong body part - If doctors or staff members do not take the time to verify the details of a procedure before beginning surgery, they may perform an unnecessary operation on the wrong part of the patient’s body. This will not only cause harm to the patient that may require additional procedures to correct, but it will leave the patient’s initial conditions unaddressed. In some cases, a procedure may be performed on the wrong side of the body, such as a knee operation performed on the left leg when it should have been performed on the right. In other cases, surgery may be performed at the wrong site, such as a spinal procedure done at the wrong level of the spine.
- Operating on the wrong patient - Even though it may seem unlikely, a surgery that was intended for one patient may be performed on another patient. These situations are often the result of clerical errors at a hospital or medical facility, such as when patients have similar names or when patient records are accidentally switched.
- Leaving foreign objects inside a patient - Doctors and nurses should be sure to account for all tools used during a procedure, and failure to do so may result in objects such as sponges or clamps being left inside a patient’s body. This can lead to serious infections or damage to internal organs.
- Injuring organs or other body parts - Mistakes made during a procedure may cause long-lasting harm to a patient. For example, accidental perforation of the bowels could lead to infections, or accidentally severing a nerve can lead to paralysis in certain parts of the body.
- Anesthesia errors - A procedure may involve local anesthesia to prevent pain and sensation in the parts of the body where surgery is being performed or general anesthesia that puts a patient to sleep during surgery. Injuries can occur during surgery if anesthesia medication is administered incorrectly, if a patient’s vital signs are not monitored to address any signs of distress, or if a patient experiences an allergic reaction. Overdoses of anesthesia can restrict oxygen flow to a patient’s brain, resulting in permanent brain damage, disability, or wrongful death.
Contact Our Aurora Surgical Malpractice Lawyers
If you or a member of your family have suffered injuries because of mistakes made during surgery, Kinnally Flaherty Krentz Loran Hodge & Masur, PC can help you understand your options for recovering financial compensation. We will investigate your case and gather evidence to show that your injury was caused by medical negligence, and we will fight to make sure you are fully compensated for your damages. Contact our Kane County medical malpractice attorneys at 630-907-0909 to set up a complimentary consultation.