Making the Cut: When Surgical Errors Count as Medical Malpractice

November 10, 2022by LegalASAP

Modern surgical techniques have advanced at unprecedented rates; surgeons have all sorts of gadgets ranging from lasers to cameras and robot arms to assist them. Yet, errors still happen, and sometimes it’s due to negligence. Seeing as how waivers can protect surgeons from some degree of responsibility, when are they held responsible for harming a patient due to their own error? This post will answer that question, and also how a medical malpractice law firm can help you file a claim for the injuries.

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Surgical errors 101

Over 200 million surgical procedures are performed each year globally. At least 4000 surgical errors occur in the United States every year. And despite all the awareness, modern facilities, and tools, surgical errors continue to occur at a high rate due to neglect and negligence. Some of the common causes of surgical errors include:

  • Faulty communication between surgeon, anesthesiologist, and other ancillary staff
  • Rush to complete cases amid time pressure
  • Gap in communication between surgeon and patient
  • Physical or mental fatigue of surgeons
  • Lack of adequate surgeon training and education
  • Absence of standardized rules and regulations
  • Substance abuse
  • Use of unreliable systems or protocols

Errors that can garner medical malpractice claims

When surgeons commit medical mistakes, patients can sustain serious or even permanent injuries.  You’re legally entitled to file a claim and seek compensation for such medical errors and negligence. So, it’s important to know and spot these common malpractices by medical experts: 

  • Prescribing the wrong injection or medicine during surgery
  • Cutting a nerve during the operation
  • Anesthesia errors
  • Cutting the wrong location
  • Lack of proper sanitization of surgical equipment
  • Performing the wrong procedure
  • Delaying time-sensitive surgery
  • Operating on the wrong organ or body part
  • Leaving an instrument or foreign object inside the body
  • Failing to take a complete history of the patient

As per law, you’re entitled to seek compensation for all the medical negligence, pain and suffering, lost wages resulting from being out of work for the procedure, costs for correction surgery, and other damages.

Errors that don’t count

Not all surgical errors constitute medical malpractice. In a case where the surgeon fails to follow the appropriate standard of care and it results in direct harm or injury to the patient, it’s considered a surgical error worthy of a medical malpractice claim. However, you’ll not qualify to seek compensation if you weren’t harmed by a procedure, or if your injury occurred despite  the surgeon/team maintaining the appropriate standard of care.

How a medical malpractice attorney can help

The hospitals and medical staff are responsible for practicing safe surgical procedures and protocols with no negligence or complications. You have the legal right to seek compensation for any form of surgical malpractice. 

Claims for medical malpractice are complex, and surgical error cases are no exception. To file a claim, you must prove the surgeon, anaesthesiologist, or other medical practitioner violated the standard of care and that it resulted in serious complications. A medical malpractice attorney can help you understand your legal options and collate all the evidence required to file a claim.

If you or your loved ones underwent surgery and suffered adverse health outcomes, contact LegalASAP now. We’ll connect you with our network of trustworthy, local lawyers who can advise you on your case. We can let you spot the exact cause of the surgical error and evaluate if your claim meets all the elements of medical negligence. 

Our team of expert lawyers can help you review medical records, arrange for witnesses, and calculate damages so that you get the maximum compensation for your economic losses, pain, and suffering. Contact us today for a free evaluation.

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