Anyone facing surgery has the right to assume that the medical team in charge will perform flawlessly.
However, mistakes can happen. Here are four common surgical errors that could have long-lasting effects on patients.
1. Foreign objects left behind
Yes, it actually happens. A surgeon can leave a foreign object behind when sewing a patient up at the end of a surgical procedure. Such objects include clamps, sponges, scalpels or gauze pads resulting in pain and possible infection plus further surgery to remove the item.
2. Nerve damage
Scar tissue can form around a nerve after surgery. This would restrict the flow of chemicals essential for the body to remain healthy. If the surgeon has unsteady hands, he or she might let a scalpel slip causing nerve damage, which might last from a few weeks to a few months. If the issue persists, the patient will require treatment.
3. Post-surgical infection
Because patients are in a weakened state following surgery, they are vulnerable to infection. Through the Nationwide Inpatient Sample (NIS), researchers performed a study of post-operative infections (POI) between 2003 and 2010. The study looked at 139,652 POI cases. The findings showed that POIs commonly resulted from surgical procedures involving the digestive tract, cardiovascular system and musculoskeletal system. The use of unhygienic equipment is often to blame.
4. Post-surgical negligence
The recovery process is an important part of the whole surgical procedure. The doctor must ensure that the hospital does not release the patient too early. The doctor must also follow up to ensure there are no complications. Irresponsible post-surgical care is an error that could result in liability for personal injury if the patient’s recovery does not go well.