80 Surgical Errors Every Week! Are You a Victim?

If you have suffered because of a surgical error, the doctor responsible may be held liable.

brain-surgery-errorsMany of us place our trust in the expertise and abilities of medical care providers because we feel safe under the care of doctors and hospitals. However, there are times when doctors and other medical professionals make mistakes. They may make mistakes in diagnosis, prescription of medications, or the recommendation of an unnecessary surgery.

Standards in Diagnosing Medical Conditions

Doctors and health care providers follow certain standards and procedures in diagnosing medical conditions. Using this information, a treatment plan is designed and implemented by the medical professional. Even if the doctor makes a correct diagnosis of the patient condition, an error can be made in providing the treatment.

To decide on the best treatment for a patient’s medical condition, a doctor should rely on training, experience, and the latest medical literature and protocol. The doctor may also consult other doctors to decide the best course of treatment for the patient. Failure to do this, for example, using outdated treatment techniques, can amount to medical malpractice.

The fact that the patient did not respond to the treatment as expected does not necessarily amount to medical malpractice. If any similarly qualified doctor would have offered the same treatment, irrespective of the outcome, it generally will not be considered medical malpractice. If the doctor provides treatment that does not conform to medical standard of care, or differs significantly from what any other reasonably qualified doctor would have provided, the doctor may be held liable for any injuries. Medical malpractice may also happen  when the doctor chooses the correct treatment plan, but fails to administer the treatment correctly.

Medical Treatment Errors Made In Surgery

Although a certain degree of risk is associated with all surgical procedures, mistakes can make it worse. According to statistics available, around 80 cases of surgical errors are reported every week in the United States.

Surgical errors include:

  • wrong-patient errors
  • wrong-site errors
  • incision errors
  • nerve damage
  • errors in the administration of anesthesia
  • leaving surgical tools inside the body of the patient
  • infection in incisions
  • blood clots

Miscommunication during the surgical process, insufficient pre-operative preparation, doctor or surgical assistant fatigue, intoxication, drug use, incompetence, or overlooking basic surgical procedures often result in surgical errors.

The Duty of Informed Consent

Doctors are required to provide patients with information about the risks associated with any medical procedure. This is also known as the duty of informed consent. Medical malpractice lawsuits may be filed against doctors if the patient was not informed about the risks involved in the procedure, and the patient is injured as a result of the medical procedure.

The complexity and uniqueness of cases involving surgical errors make it necessary to seek the services of an experienced St. Louis surgical error attorney.  If you or your loved one has been a victim of a medical treatment error, contact Zevan and Davidson Law Firm at (314) 588-7200 today.

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Photo credit: en.wikipedia.org via Flickr

Missouri Medical Malpractice Lawyer

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