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Surgical Errors

Surgical mistakes can occur during some of the most common surgeries like an appendectomy or hysterectomy. They account for more than 250,000 deaths a year, making it the third leading cause of death in the United States.

The last thing anyone wants to hear when he or she wakes up from surgery is that an error occurred during the procedure. Surgical errors can range from leaving objects in the patient’s body to nerve damage.

Attorney for Surgical Errors in Montgomery County, TX

As patients, we trust that a surgeon will do everything they can to prevent surgical errors from happening. If you have sustained injuries from a surgical error, you should contact Evans & Powell, PLLC right away. Our attorneys are experienced with medical malpractice and will do everything in their power to achieve the best possible outcome for your situation.

 Call Evans & Powell, PLLC today at (713) 622 - 2000 to schedule a free case consultation, or submit your information in the online contact form. We represent clients in communities in Montgomery County and Harris County such as The Woodlands, Magnolia, Pinehurst, Montgomery, Spring, Houston and many others. 


Overview of Surgical Errors in Montgomery County, TX


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Common Surgical Errors

Surgical errors can happen through a simple mistake, but the result can be devastating and last a lifetime. Typically, surgeons and their staff follow the standard protocols before, during and after a surgical procedure, but errors can still occur as a result of miscommunication, fatigue, carelessness and inadequate preoperative planning.

Some of the most common surgical errors include the following:

  • Foreign objects left in patient’s body: This is one of the most common surgical mistakes. Surgeons have left gauze, clamps and even scalpels inside of patients. This can cause severe infection, pain and sometimes death if not treated immediately.
  • Anesthesia errors: Anesthesia errors are also common, but one of the most deadly surgical errors. If a patient receives too much anesthesia, they will not receive enough oxygen to the brain, which can cause brain damage or death. Also, if a patient doesn’t receive enough of the drug, they can wake up during the procedure and feel all the pain without being able to move.
  • Wrong patient: Lack of preoperative verification, poor hospital protocol and miscommunication between surgeons can lead to the wrong patient being operated on. Operating on the wrong patient can lead to devastating consequences like unnecessary amputation and loss of healthy organs.
  • Operating on the wrong site: Surgeons have operated on the wrong body part of a patient because of lack of preoperative verification or miscommunication. This is most common in kidney transplants and amputations and can result in the loss of healthy organs and limbs.
  • Nerve Damage: This can happen as the result of a hand twitch or the wrong flick of the wrist. The results can have life threating consequences such as lifetime disability and pain.

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Why do Surgical Errors Occur?

Research by the JAMA Surgery Journal found that the leading cause of surgical errors is poor communication between a surgeon and her or his team. Poor communication can involve missing information, miscommunication or even members of the medical team failing to speak up and tell the surgeon they’re wrong.

Other common reasons for surgical errors include:

  • Lack of preoperative planning: Preoperative planning is critical for a well-prepared surgery. Such planning can consist of reviewing the steps of the surgical procedure and the nurses and assistants ensuring the necessary equipment are prepared and ready.
  • Incompetence: A surgeon may not have performed the procedure many times and lack the skills necessary to conduct the surgery successfully.
  • Fatigue: When someone is tired, they are most likely to make a mistake. It’s common for surgeons and nurses to be fatigued due to their notoriously long work hours.
  • Improper work process: A surgeon may decide that certain steps in surgery are unnecessary. Taking shortcuts during an operation can be detrimental to the patient. 
  • Neglect: Surgeons are not as careful as they should be at times. Neglect can include failing to ensure surgical equipment is sterilized and skipping steps during the procedure.

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Additional Resources for Surgical Errors in Harris County, TX

Section 74.251 Health Care Liability Claims– Read through the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code that governs medical malpractice cases in the states. The statute defines how long a patient has to file a medical malpractice claim and what to do if the patient is under 12 years old.

Wrong-Site Surgery, Retained Surgical Items and Surgical Fires– Follow the link to read through the scholarly article in the JAMA Surgery Journal. The objective of the study was to find the cause of specific surgical errors. JAMA Surgery is a monthly professional medical journal.


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Surgical Errors Attorney in Harris County, TX

Evans & Powell, PLLC is here to help those who have been seriously injured as a result of surgical errors. Attorneys at our firm will do everything they can to make sure you receive adequate and full compensation.

Call Evans & Powell, PLLC today at (713) 622 - 2000 to set up a case consultation or submit your information in the online contact form. We serve clients in communities across Harris County and Montgomery County such as Houston, Spring, Cut and Shoot, Panorama Village, Porter Heights, Woodbranch and many others.

 


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