When The Worst Occurs: Surgical Errors
Surgery, for many of us, is a stressful procedure that we hope we will only need a maximum of once in our lives. A specialized physician, or surgeon, will open us up while we are unconscious, and remove or fix a problem in our bodies. It is inherently stress-inducing, invasive, and generally necessary when done. We place our lives in the hands of our surgeons, hoping and assuming they will do their best. And, most of the time, we can rely on them for doing exactly that.
Unfortunately, however, that does not mean there are not mistakes. And while a doctor’s mistake in misdiagnosing the common cold as the flu can be frustrating, it is nothing compared to the perils, pain, and suffering we experience with surgical errors. Surgical errors can range from errors in the diagnostic process (such as determining a patient needs a surgery when they actually do not) to, in the worst cases, botched surgeries in which the surgeon irrevocably hurts the patient’s health and well-being. If this all sounds familiar to you, you may be entitled to compensation in a medical malpractice lawsuit, as part of a surgical malpractice suit.
What Does Not Classify As a Surgical Error
Surgery, by nature, is messy. Professional surgeons will train for years, and take every available precaution, in order to control all the variables, but things will still happen out of their hands. Certain infections and organ responses to surgery will complicate the process, and even risk the patient’s life.
However, if the surgery is botched by factors out of the surgeon’s control, the physician is not liable for any of the damages. No, complications and bad outcomes do not necessarily constitute malpractice by the surgeon. Rather, it is a matter of standards of care.
When It Does Classify As a Surgical Error
Various different situations can be classified as ‘surgical errors,’ including but not limited to: