We would like to believe that modern medical techniques have all but eliminated the likelihood of surgical errors. And while things may have improved over time, we still live in an age where doctors and other medical professionals can make serious mistakes while carrying out a surgical procedure.
Results of a study recently published in JAMA Surgery reveal that surgical errors are still a problem in the medical community. The study looked at occurrences of wrong-site surgery, items being left inside patients and surgical fire. These three kinds of incidents are known as “never events” and according to the study, the frequency with which they occur should be a cause for concern.
The study examined a collection of studies conducted between 2004 and 2014. Based on these studies, the JAMA Surgery report estimated that there were 5000 cases of items being left in patients and 500 cases of wrong-site surgery annually. The number of surgical fire cases was not known.
The researchers believe that many these incidents can be attributed to communication problems. The authors of the survey expressed that efforts should be made to better evaluate how surgical errors occur and what efforts can be made to improve patient safety.
The results of this study are indeed sobering and the bear out the fact that surgical errors are still a threat to the health and well-being of patients. Any of the never events that were researched could cause serious injuries.
If you or a member of your family are ever harmed during a surgical procedure, you may wish to contact an Arizona medical malpractice attorney for representation. An experienced attorney could examine your case and help you determine what course of action you may want to take in seeking compensation.
Source: Outpatient Surgery Magazine, “Still Too Many Never Events,” Daniel Cook, June 15, 2015