No one looks forward to having to report to a medical facility to have surgery. People who face surgery often encounter a large amount of fear even if they are told that they are undergoing a ‘routine’ procedure. That’s because being put under general anesthesia is anything but routine to people who do not work in the medical field. Despite these fears, most people assume that whatever procedure they are going to have done will most likely be completed without incident. That’s because we are conditioned over the course of our lifetimes to trust our doctors, and for the most part that trust is well-placed.
However, doctors make mistakes more commonly than most people would think. A recent study done by researchers at Johns Hopkins indicated that as many as 4,000 ‘never’ events occur in the United States every year, and these ‘never’ events are just that – things that most people would assume would never happen in an operating room. A link to the full text of that study can be found here. Below are five common mistakes that are made during surgical procedures that are nothing short of shocking in terms of their levels of negligence.
- Anesthesia Errors
Anesthesia errors are quite common, as anesthesia requires the proper mix of substances for the patient such that the patient needs to avoid anything that could lead to an allergic reaction. Anesthesia errors are also quite often deadly.
- Wrong Body Part
It may be hard to believe, but another common surgical error involves operating on the wrong body part of a patient. That includes, for example, operating on the wrong leg or operating on the wrong organ or body part altogether.
- Closing the Wound
Obviously, every surgical procedure involves opening up the patient’s body to do what needs to be done. These incisions are like massive cuts in a sense and they need to be properly closed in order to avoid infection. That does not always happen.
- Wrong Patient
There are several reasons that people need to wear identification bracelets in hospitals, but most people would never guess that one of them was to minimize the chance that surgery will be performed on the wrong patient.
- Tools Inside the Patient
Surgery involves the use of a lot of tools. Those running the surgery need to make sure that none are left inside the patient’s body. Stunningly, this is a very common mistake and it can lead to severe and in some cases dire consequences.
People who are going to have surgery should not approach that day overcome by fear that something is going to go drastically wrong. However, people should understand that these mistakes do happen and that when they do they need to be ready to stand up for themselves and protect their legal rights. If you or someone you love has been harmed because of a surgical mistake, contact the New York medical malpractice attorneys at The Fitzgerald Law Firm today to schedule a free initial consultation.