Surgery is arguably one of the most stressful medical experience as a person can have. Even in the simplest and most straightforward of procedures, there are risks to the patient, such as the risk of infection, the risk of an adverse reaction to the anesthesia and even the risk of significant medical mistakes by the surgeon you entrust with your health and safety.
Surgical mistakes might seem like something that would never happen in a modern medical facility with digital record-keeping and multiple surgical assistants and nurses on hand to help the doctor operating.
Unfortunately, surgical mistakes are more common than many people think. If you or someone you love becomes the victim of a surgical mistake, the results might include expensive additional medical care, pain and discomfort, and even a worse medical prognosis.
The kind of mistake your doctor makes affects the impact it has on you
There are several common surgical mistakes, each of which happened numerous times every week across the United States. The most common involves the physician leaving items behind in a patient. The two other most common surgical mistakes involve performing the wrong operation on a patient or operating on the wrong part or side of the body.
Obviously, leaving objects inside a patient can lead to painful inflammation and infections. There will typically be a requirement for a second surgery, which can impact how well your body heals from the care you receive.
Having the wrong surgery performed can have devastating consequences, especially if your physician removes a body part or implants something that you don’t need. Surgery on the wrong part of the body can also have catastrophic consequences for your health and well-being that could preclude you from getting the surgery initially needed.
Surgical mistakes are called “never events” for a reason
Those who work in insurance and medicine refer to these kinds of mistakes as “never events” because careful monitoring and oversight practices should completely eliminate these types of mistakes.
For those who have to deal with the long-term repercussions of a doctor’s surgical error, a medical malpractice claim may help them recover the medical costs, lost wages and other costs because of the mistake.