How is Wrong-Site Surgery a Blatant Form of Medical Malpractice?
Posted on December 24th, 2014 by Admin
Wrong-site surgery (WSS) may not be a well-known term among medical patients. However, it is a common term used in the medical field for operating on the wrong body area, the wrong patient, or performing the wrong surgical procedure on a patient. Amputating the wrong limb, giving the wrong patient an appendectomy, or performing a gall bladder removal instead of a tonsillectomy are all examples of wrong-site surgeries. And as cases go, medical malpractice lawyers in Atlanta have a good chance of winning a WSS case.
A National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) article reported that a high percentage of wrong-site surgeries result in malpractice claim awards—79 percent for eye surgery and 84 percent of orthopedic surgeries. While wrong-site surgeries are rare (one in 27,686 cases), the number of these cases increased significantly between 1998 and 2007 from 15 cases to 592 cases. As a result of wrong-site surgeries, state medical boards may impose penalties on physicians and insurers may refuse to pay for the surgeries done. Wrong-site surgeries are definitely more blatant forms of medical malpractice.
Various causes can lead to this particular type of medical malpractice. Organizational factors that lead to WSS often include:
- Communication failures
- Procedural noncompliance
- Leadership problems
- More than one surgeon involved in the procedure
- Multiple procedures during one operation
- Team incompetence
- Failure to recheck patient information before beginning surgery
The hospital or practitioner may even approach patients about a malpractice settlement before they have had a chance to consult a lawyer. It is always in your best interests to seek a legal opinion first. The Cochran Firm Atlanta can help protect your rights and ensure the settlement is a fair offer.