Nobody is perfect. Even your surgeon can make a mistake.
Are surgeons required by law to be perfect? The short answer is, no. However, the law requires that the surgeon provide a reasonable care standard.
Where the surgeon fell below the standard of care and provided harm was caused to the patient, you could successfully sue for damages.
Surgical error happens far more often than you would think.
A research study done a few years ago concluded that 250,000 people die every year from medical errors, making it the third leading cause of death in the US.
Read along for a quick summary of the law and surgical error.
What are the Different Types of Surgical Error?
Surgical error is generally due to human error and is totally preventable.
These would include:
- Conducting the Wrong Type of Surgery
Conducting the wrong type of surgery is usually caused by miscommunication or misdiagnosis. If the error caused you harm, you would have a claim.
- Operating on the Wrong Body Part
You were booked in for an appendix removal, and you were given a limb amputation. This type of mistake can be severe and may result in additional dangerous operations to correct. Sometimes corrective surgery is not possible.
- Leaving Foreign Objects in the Body
Sometimes the operating team fail in their procedures and leave an object used in the operation in the patient’s body. This can cause the patient significant discomfort and complications.
An additional surgical procedure would be required to remove the foreign object and repair any damage.
- Accidental or Reckless Incisions
A surgeon may mistakenly make an incision in one area only to realize it’s in the wrong place, and he may have to make an additional incision.
- Medical Complications and Anaesthesia Issues
Specialized doctors are responsible for ensuring that you get the correct anaesthetics and that you are under for the appropriate amount of time. Administration of too much, or too little anaesthetic, or the wrong type, can qualify as malpractice.
- Damage to Nerves or Body Parts
A surgeon may damage nerves, or other body parts, or organs whilst operating. This will require repair.
- Infection Acquired at Hospital
Infection is always a risk and needs to be carefully monitored and prevented. If the hospital fails to prevent infection, or deal with it and harm is caused, there could be a malpractice suit.
What Kind of Compensation Can You Get?
All expenses related to the surgical error can be claimed.
- Medical expenses to repair and treat the patient
- Pain and suffering caused by error
- Emotional distress
- Loss of future earning capacity
- Lost wages
Do You Need to Appoint an Attorney?
Medical malpractice lawsuits are incredibly complex in nature. They require a thorough understanding of the law and medical practices and treatment.
Expert evidence is often led, which requires rigorous cross-examination.
As a result, you must appoint a specialized and highly qualified and experienced Chicago surgical error lawyer to handle your claim for you.
Appointing the right lawyer will attract a cost and ensure that you receive the maximum award.