Lawyers for Surgery Errors in Rhode Island

Hospital - surgery team in the operating room or Op of a clinic operating on a patient, perhaps it's an emergency a assistant holding a cotton swap forceps

When surgery errors take place, they usually have serious consequences. According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality they are also, unfortunately, not that uncommon, particularly if you include ambulatory surgery statistics in with all other surgical errors. Mistakes made during surgery can have lasting consequences, sometimes even including paralysis or death.

If you have been injured or lost a loved one due to errors made during surgery (or any other form of medical malpractice), you may be entitled to compensation. At Dana & Dana, our interest is fighting for victims of serious injuries or wrongful death. Our office has a history of helping victims of medical malpractice and other acts of medical negligence. Contact us today for a free consultation.

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Surgical mistakes and legal ramifications

Some of the more common errors made during surgery include:

  • Operating on the wrong body part, site, or side;
  • Performing the incorrect procedure;
  • Performing a procedure on the wrong patient;
  • Leaving a surgical instrument in the body;
  • Puncturing an organ;
  • Causing an infection due to a sanitation issue; and
  • Making a mistake while administering anesthesia; amongst others.

Many of these are caused by surgeon or staff fatigue or distraction, a breakdown in communication, or careless decision-making prior to or during surgery. Some of these mistakes most often take place during child birth, resulting in birth injuries, as well as in emergency rooms, where staff are moving quickly, often fatigued, and typically have to see many patients in a short time span.

The consequences of surgical mistakes can be devastating: having to go through additional surgeries to correct the mistakes, medical complications, permanent damage to organs or nerves, internal bleeding, permanent disfigurement or disabilities, and even death. Although most patients sign an informed consent document prior to having surgery acknowledging that there are certain risks associated with a given procedure, doctors and hospitals can still be held accountable for mistakes that lie outside of risks that can be reasonably expected.

Expectations for doctors

Efforts have been made to try and prevent surgeons from making these mistakes by:

  • requiring site-marking protocols;
  • improving communications by mandating surgical timeouts (planned pauses before procedures are commenced in order to review key aspects of the procedure with all personnel who will be involved); and
  • creating surgical safety checklists.

Surgeons are required to follow a particular standard of care as is commonly accepted in their field, and when they do not, they can be held legally liable for any resulting injuries and damages.

Rhode Island surgical error & malpractice attorneys

If you or a loved one suspects medical negligence in the context of a surgical procedure, you should discuss the incident with an experienced medical malpractice attorney right away. The attorneys at Dana & Dana can help. Contact us today for a free consultation so that we can review your records, consult with the appropriate medical specialists, and do an evaluation of any potential damages.