How A Surgical Error Malpractice Lawyer Can Help You In Your Time Of Need
For Victims of Surgical Errors In Maryland, DC and Virginia
As much as many of us would like to believe and trust in our doctor and feel secure in the fact that we will come out of surgery better than or at least as good as before we went in, surgical errors do occur.
When a patient signs papers, making them aware of the things that ‘may’ go wrong, they never see themselves or their loved ones as the statistic that does go wrong. There is rarely another time when your life is so completely in the hands of another human being. According to the ANZ Journal of Surgery, August 2008, in a study that reviewed surgical error malpractice suits the findings were amazing.
- 73% of errors involved experienced surgeons
- 84% occurred in routine rather than advanced operations
- 21% were contributed to technology or system failures
Simply experiencing a surgical error does not necessarily mean a surgical error malpractice has occurred. It must be shown that your surgeon failed to perform the surgery to the medical community’s standard of care, and that the failed duty resulted in your personal injury.
Studies have found that approximately 40% of surgical errors led to permanent disability with approximately 23% resulting in death. Nearly 75% of these surgical errors occurred in the ‘operation’ phase of surgical care.
System factors have been shown to contribute to approximately 85% of the surgical errors. Some of these factors include but are not limited to ‘lack of’ or inexperience of technical competency, lack of supervision, breakdown in communication between either medical specialist/patient or clinician/clinician.
Nearly two-thirds of the sampled claims involved errors in surgical care. Technical error claims vs. non-technical error claims were significantly more likely to occur and involve breakdowns at multiple levels with inexperience and patient related factors identified as casual factors.
Yes, these are truly astounding findings and show that surgical errors are not as uncommon as one might like to believe. Surgical error malpractice involves a medical professional’s inability to exercise reasonable care, skilled learning, a familiarity with applicable medical standards and protocols and the prudence to prevent the patient experiencing injury and possibly death. Each year thousands of patients experience the effects of this negligence, many without ever realizing compensation.
Causes of Surgical Error
While all surgeries carry an inherent risk of error, neglect on the part of the surgeon or medical team can greatly increase the chance for surgical error. Some of them being:
- Poor pre-operative planning or care (diet, medical history, health issues, medications and lifestyle choices)
- Appropriated timing of the procedure
- Site preparation
- Retained instruments in surgical wound
- Anesthesia complications both during procedure and post op
- Improperly sterilized equipment
- Leaving in an unintended object
While surgical negligence is most often associated with difficult surgeries of the spine, brain and heart errors often occur during routine surgeries. These include but are not limited to sinus, gynecological, colon, cosmetic and vision.
Proper measurers must be taken in gynecological and colon surgeries to prevent perforation of the organs. Undetected, these perforations may lead to serious infection, bleeding or death. Bacteria from the bowel can leak into the body causing infection such as peritonitis or sepsis to name a few. A perforation of the uterus can cause not only life threatening infection but also severe bleeding, possibly leading to death.
Gynecological surgeries should also be closely monitored for blood clots in the legs. These clots also known as deep vein thrombosis can break loose and travel to the heart or lungs causing pulmonary embolism or death. Sinus and cosmetic surgeries are also at high risk for surgical error. The delicate muscles and nerves in the facial area including the nose and eyes have the potential to be easily severed leading to permanent paralysis.
According to a recent study from the Harvard School of Public Health, most surgical errors occur in routine operations under the guidance of experienced medical professionals. Surgical errors are not limited to complex surgical procedures and happen on a daily basis. If you or one of your loved ones has sustained an injury due to surgical error, negligence or malpractice you may be entitled to compensation.
If you or a loved one has suffered from a surgical error malpractice, call our medical malpractice lawyers at Greenberg & Bederman at 301-589-2200 or toll free 800-800-1144, or submit our online form (below) for a free legal consultations with an attorney.
The initial surgical error malpractice consultation is free of charge, and if we agree to handle your surgical error or malpractice case, we will work on a contingency fee basis, which means we get paid for our services only if there is a monetary recovery of funds. A lawsuit must be filed before an applicable expiration date, known as a statute of limitations, so please call right away to ensure that you do not waive your right to possible compensation.
For more information visit our main Medical Malpractice webpage...