4 common types of surgical errors

4 common types of surgical errors

| Nov 16, 2020 | Medical Malpractice |

The leading causes of death for patients in the United States include medical mistakes and surgical errors. This substantial threat to patient safety is a serious public health problem. 

Errors occur when either medical professionals do something incorrectly in the operating room or they fail to do what they should have. These mistakes unfortunately extend to the operating room, where sometimes the surgeries go wrong in a few different ways. 

1. Leaving an item in the patient

Surgeries often require the use of various tools or medical equipment inside and outside the body. Sometimes surgeons and operating room nurses fail to remove all of these items from the patients. The individual can then suffer serious, long-term health complications. Commonly forgotten objects include scissors, pins, sponges, gauze and clamps. 

2. Surgery on the wrong patient

If a doctor misdiagnoses a patient’s condition or some miscommunication happens, the patient might undergo an unnecessary operation. An incorrect and unnecessary surgery detrimentally alters a person’s physical and psychological state. 

3. Nerve damage

If the surgeon nicks a nerve during an operation, the patient might sustain major bodily damage, depending on the body part affected and the severity of the damage to the nerve. As a result, the individual might suffer from chronic pain throughout his or her body or experience numbness or a burning sensation where the injury occurred. 

4. Anesthesia errors

If a patient gets too much anesthesia during the course of the surgery, his or her oxygen levels will deplete, potentially leading to brain damage or death. Should the patient not receive enough anesthesia, he or she can experience excruciating pain after waking up in the middle of the operation. 

If a patient experiences any type of surgical errors, he or she can explore medical malpractice options.