Surgical errors happen more often than one might think, and most often these errors are of a technical nature. Most technical errors happen during routine operations with experienced surgeons, under conditions of increased patient complexity or systems failure. The U.S. National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health reported the following statistics:
- Forty-nine percent of the technical errors caused permanent disability; an additional 16% resulted in death.
- Two-thirds (65%) of the technical errors were linked to manual error,
- 9% to errors in judgment, and
- 26% to both manual and judgment error.
- A minority of technical errors involved advanced procedures requiring special training 16% (also known as index operations).
- Surgeons inexperienced with the task (14%), or
- Poorly supervised residents (9%).
- The majority involved experienced surgeons (73%), and occurred in routine, rather than index, operations (84%).
- Patient-related complexities-including emergencies, difficult or unexpected anatomy, and previous surgery-contributed to 61% of technical errors, and
- Technology or systems failures contributed to 21%.
Commonality of Surgical Errors
Statistics such as these reflect the commonality of surgical errors, and the many ways in which they can happen. Surgical errors can cause permanent disability and/ or death. Some other common types of surgical errors are:
- Wrong side surgery.
- Wrong patient surgery.
- Anesthesia errors.
- Foreign objects left in body.
- Nerve damage.
Surgical errors are a very serious matter and should be handled by serious and experienced attorneys. If you or a loved one have been a victim of a surgical error contact one of our attorneys for a free consultation about your claim. Our attorneys are here to guide you through the legal system, and fight for an award on your behalf.