The risk of a surgical error is always a concern whenever you go “under the knife.” Surgical errors can result in serious debilitating injury, paralysis, or even death, and are committed by health care professionals (such as surgeons and hospital staff). If you or someone you love has been injured due to a surgical error, contact York Law Firm for a free case evaluation. We can help advise you of your legal rights.
Common Surgeries where Surgical Errors Occur
Surgical errors can occur in both invasive surgery (a surgery that involves making an incision in the patient’s body and inserting instruments or medical devices into the incision) and non-invasive surgery (surgery that does not require penetration in the body through an incision). However, the most common types of surgeries where surgical errors occur are:
- Thoracic Surgery, surgery involving the lungs and the chest.
- Gastric Bypass Surgery, surgery that reduces the size of the stomach.
- Laparoscopic Surgery, surgery of the intestines or abdomen.
- Cardiothoracic Surgery, surgery of diseases affecting the heart (such as coronary artery bypass surgery and congenital heart disease)
- Cosmetic Surgery
When you undergo surgery, your doctor will give you anesthesia. Anesthetics are meant to reduce or prevent pain. There are four main types:
- Local anesthesia, which numbs one small area of the body.
- Conscious or intravenous sedation, which uses a mild sedative to relax the patient and pain medicine to alleviate pain.
- Regional anesthesia, which blocks pain in an area of the body.
- General anesthesia, in which your whole body is affected and the patient goes to sleep and feels nothing.
Anesthesia errors can result in irreversible damage and debilitating injury or even death. While there are several different types of anesthesia errors, the most common are:
- Too much or too little anesthesia administered
- Defective medical devices used during sedation
- Failing to provide the patient with proper instruction, such as failing to remind the patient not to eat before surgery
- Administering anesthesia to an allergic patient
Statute of Limitations in Surgical Error Cases
As with any lawsuit, medical malpractice lawsuits must be filed within a certain period of time of the harmful wrongful conduct, a period known as the statute of limitations. Failure to bring suit within this period may bar your ability to bring suit completely. The statute of limitations, however, differs depending on the subject matter of the case. At York Law Firm, our attorneys can advise you on the applicable statute of limitations.