Each year at least 4000 surgical errors occur in the United States. When a surgical error occurs due to a surgeon and any other medical care provider’s negligent actions before, during, or after surgery, the victim can choose to sue.
A surgical error lawsuit is mainly designed for the victim to help them recover damages for the injuries they sustained from a surgical procedure. However, some victims fail to discover the injuries until some years later, and others do not know that they have a right to sue for a surgical error.
Common Types of Surgical Errors
There are several types of surgical errors. Some go unnoticed for a very long time. Here are some of the errors that a victim can claim.
Unnecessary Surgery or Wrong Patient
While this is not common, it has still been known to happen. As the name suggests, this is where a patient gets a surgery that they do not need. This can happen if the surgical team picks up a wrong patient or the doctor makes a wrong diagnosis.
Depending on the surgery, the patient can have unending complications or adverse effects, and they have the right to sue.
Wrong Site Surgery
This error occurs when the surgeon operates on the wrong part of the body or organ. Wrong-site surgeries are the most common surgical errors. In some cases, a patient can lose a limb if it was mistakenly amputated.
Damage to Internal Organs
During a surgical procedure, the surgeon can accidentally puncture or perforate an internal organ with a laser, scalpel, or scissors. Surgeons are required to be very keen when operating on a patient because such mistakes can cause a patient their life or lead to severe health issues.
Unsanitary surgical instruments can also lead to serious health risks. If a patient’s immune system is already compromised, they can get sepsis or serious infections because of cross-contamination.
A mistake during the administration of anesthesia or a surgeon’s physical error can cause serious damage to the nerve.
Surgical Instruments Left in Body
This error is also quite common. Surgeons leave gauzes, sponges, or other surgical instruments in a patient’s body, and this causes severe infection and complications.
How to Prove a Surgical Error Lawsuit
To sue for a surgical error, there has to be proof of injury or harm. The injury must be a result of a surgical error. If a surgeon made a mistake during surgery, but the mistake did not cause any harm, you cannot sue. For your case to be valid, the surgical injuries must be directly connected to the doctor’s actions before, during, or after surgery.
The victim is also obligated to mitigate the damages. Therefore, you should also show proof that you took some steps to minimize the effects or losses you claim. If you fail to show proof of mitigation of damages, the court can deny your claim. Your lawyer will have to work with medical experts to prove that the doctor or surgeon in question acted below the standard of care.
Lawyers also try to get professional medical care providers, especially those who were part of the surgical team to serve as a witness. Litigating a surgical error lawsuit is never easy. A medical malpractice lawyer will have to put in a lot of time and resources to prove that no other reasonable surgeon would have made the same mistakes.
Get in Touch with a Medical Malpractice Lawyer
If you are a victim of a surgical error, you may want to get in touch with a medical malpractice lawyer to know how to sue. These lawsuits are very complicated and require a lot of expertise.