Nobody really wants to undergo surgery, but in most cases, it is the only viable solution to fix a problem or injury from which a person is suffering. In these situations, the patient puts his or her trust in the doctors and medical staff. Medical professionals have a legal duty of care to their patients, and if they breach that duty, it may be considered negligence or malpractice. If you or your loved one was hurt during a medical procedure of any kind, an experienced personal injury attorney can help determine liability and seek compensation for your damages. Depending on the circumstances, a physician may not be the only defendant in a lawsuit—the hospital administration, attending residents, and medical students can also be found liable.
Types of Medical Mistakes
Although most people do not like to think they happen, surgical errors do occur. Various factors can cause them, including not verifying patient information, miscommunication between doctors, and lack of protocol. Regardless of the reasons for the errors, they can cause serious injury and even irreparable harm to a patient. A few of the most common mistakes that can take place during surgery include but are not limited to the following:
Wrong body part: Even though it may be difficult to comprehend, the incorrect body part is sometimes operated on. A mix-up in a patient’s records can lead medical personnel to indicate the wrong leg or arm for surgery.
Foreign object left in the patient’s body: In certain cases, a medical instrument may fall into a patient’s body cavity without a surgeon or nurse noticing. In addition, medical staff may accidentally leave scalpels, gauze, or clamps in the body before closing an incision. Any foreign item has the potential to damage body parts or ultimately cause an infection or allergic reaction in the patient.
Incorrect anesthesia: If too much anesthesia is administered to a patient, it can cause brain damage due to a lack of oxygen. If too little anesthesia is given, the patient might awaken during the surgery and suffer excruciating pain.
Misidentified patient: Although it is hard to believe, in some cases, the wrong patient may be operated on. This can happen if medical staff fail to properly check a person’s ID or their intake papers are accidentally switched with another patient’s. This type of error can lead to the removal of healthy, functioning organs and other problems.
Internal organ damage: A procedural error can lead to a punctured lung or damaged nerve, which can result in debilitating effects, including life-threatening infection.
Contact a Will County Personal Injury Lawyer
A mistake made during surgery or any type of medical procedure can cause serious consequences, requiring long-term care or even death in some cases. That is why it is essential to contact a Joliet medical malpractice attorney at the reputable law firm of McNamara Phelan McSteen, LLC. We understand how a medical error can impact the rest of your life. We will thoroughly investigate the circumstances that led to your injury, determine liability, and hold them accountable for their negligence. To arrange a free consultation, call our office today at 815-727-0100.