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Philadelphia Surgical Error Lawyer
Medical operations alone pose serious concerns already. So, regardless if the procedure is categorized as “low risk” or “high risk,” something can happen to you while being operated on. This means whether the surgeon is just removing something or performing a surgery, the patient is putting his or her life at risk. While new technology has delivered better ways to operate, the number of surgical mistakes have not let up in past years. In fact, John Hopkins University said in a recent report that at least 4,000 surgical mishaps happen yearly. This means that thousands of people suffer severe injuries caused by mistakes in procedures done by medical professionals.
If you believe that you have been a victim of surgical error then you need to consult with an attorney to better understand your choices. You need to know your options.
Types of Surgical Errors
Many surgical errors are preventable but they still happen. Since surgery is quite a broad term then the range of surgical mistakes is also large. Some common mistakes include:
- operation on the wrong patient
- incision on the wrong body area
- nerve damage during surgery
- giving too much or too little medication
- foreign object left inside the person’s body (utensil, sponge, etc.)
- wrong procedure performed
- bowel perforation and organ puncture
- failed cataract surgery
- anesthesia errors
- post-surgical infections
- abdominal surgery
- breast reduction surgery
- penile implant surgery
- injuries caused from robotic surgery, such as those related to prostate surgery
- injury from obstetrical and gynecological surgery
- orthopedic surgical errors, such as spinal cord injury, shoulder injury and knee injury
- x-ray mistakes
- bariatric surgery or gastric bypass
- cosmetic or plastic surgery
- gallbladder surgery
- back surgery and hernia surgery
Damages and Compensation
If the negligent act of the medical professional affected, injured or caused the death of the victim then the victims can be entitled to compensation. Damages suffered initially as well as future losses can be economic or non-economic and can be pursued using testimonials and evidence.
Economic damages – as with most legal cases, economic damages refer to what is tangible and can be measured financially. These are easy to prove in court. Some examples include:
- Loss of wages
- Medical expenses
- Time spent away from work
- Financial support for the victim’s dependents
Non-economic damages – these refer to the experienced losses of the plaintiff. These damages are very hard to award compensation for because non-economic damages are also intangible. Some examples include:
- Mental anguish
- Emotional distress
- Pain and suffering
- Reduced quality of life
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of consortium
Causes of Surgical Mistakes
Surgical errors do not just happen by themselves. Many times, doctors, nurses, medical staff, surgeons and other similar medical staff work with full schedules. They are packed with meetings, appointments, consultations and examinations. It’s not unusual for these people to be overworked and to be exhausted. Surgeons experiencing fatigue are more likely commit a mistake during a procedure compared to those with enough rest.
Surgeons need to follow certain safety guidelines and measures before they can operate on a patient. Some surgeons have been in the profession for so long that they become too comfortable with a procedure. Some try to take shortcuts, skipping steps completely while they prepare for surgery. This can eventually lead to surgical mistakes.
There are some instances when the operating surgeon doesn’t have enough accumulated skills and experience to carry out the procedure without complications. While practicing medical professionals should operate with adequate experience and knowledge, this is not the case all of the time.
Lack of Preoperative Planning
Actions done before the operation can affect the results of the operation. Surgeons review the medical history of patients including past procedures, diagnoses, prescribed medications and a history of allergies among other things. Medical equipment also need to be secured and checked before using it. Sometimes, medical staff may not have done enough preoperative planning to prevent as many unexpected circumstances.
Successful operations are built on teamwork as well. Surgeons and medical staff should communicate properly and effectively to ensure procedures are followed and things are done properly.
Contact The Brod Law Firm
Surgical errors can be life changing. They can lead to permanent damage, impairment or even death. This is why it is important to make sure that you consult with in an experienced Pennsylvania medical malpractice lawyer to understand the choices that you have.
An experienced surgical error lawyer will be able to assess if you have a case and if so pursue justice and compensation for your injuries and damages.
If you or a loved one have been the victim of a serious surgery error then contact The Brod Law Firm today and put our 30+ years of experience to work for you.
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