Surgical errors are a mistake or act of negligence that occur as a result of a surgical procedure. These errors can occur during the patient’s pre-operative or post-operative care or during the procedure. The patient’s health and life can be at risk when he or she undergoes complex surgeries, but they can be necessary to correct serious health problems and injuries. If during one of these complex procedures, a surgeon or other medical professional makes a mistake, serious injury or death to the patient can result.
This form of malpractice is one of the most litigated forms of medical malpractice, with nearly half of all trials brought against surgeons. Forms of surgical errors include:
- Failure to obtain informed consent;
- Failure to monitor a patient properly during the surgery;
- Improperly administering the anesthesia;
- Improper pre-operative care;
- Leaving behind an instrument or other foreign object in the patient’s body;
- Operating on the wrong side of the patient’s body;
- Perforating an organ or artery;
- Performing a surgical procedure that is unnecessary;
- Performing the wrong operation;
- Providing negligent post-operative care to the surgical patient; and
- Using surgical tools or medical devices improperly.
All surgeries carry risk, including minor ones. Unforeseen problems can arise in any situation. When problems are caused by mistakes or negligence by the surgeon, anesthesiologist, or other medical professional an injured patient may have grounds to commence a medical malpractice lawsuit. If the complications could not have been prevented, regardless of the surgeon’s skill or care, then the lawsuit does not have merit. Determining whether a case has merit can only be made by a thorough investigation of the procedure based on medical records and accounts from the medical personnel involved.
Complications can be described as adverse reactions or events that occur due to a pre-existing condition or other circumstances that the doctor cannot control. Even when surgical procedures are performed on the patient correctly, a patient may still not fully recover. Such issues are covered by informed consent, wherein the doctor must inform their patient of potential risks and benefits of the procedure prior to obtaining consent to perform the procedure.
All medical professionals are held to a high standard when it comes to performing surgeries as well as pre-operative and post-operative care. When they make mistakes, the results can be deadly. Therefore they could be held legally accountable for surgical mistakes through a medical malpractice lawsuit.
If you or a loved one has been the victim of surgical malpractice, contact an experienced Kingston, New York medical malpractice attorney to evaluate your case.
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