Surgery is rarely a first option. A conservative approach to healthcare and wellbeing generally means your physician will order medication and therapy. Operations should only take place because they’re absolutely necessary to achieve the desired health care outcome. When you agree to surgery, you’re putting your wellbeing, your health, and your life in the hands of a surgeon and her surgical team.
So what happens when something goes wrong? What happens when there’s a surgical error, not because of the nature of the procedure, but because of the negligence of the surgeon, a nurse, the anesthesiologist, or another member of the surgical team? As medical malpractice lawyers in Florida, we know that surgery errors often mean surgical malpractice.Surgical Malpractice In Florida
All surgery involves risk, medical professionals tell us. But the source of the risk is not supposed to be the doctors, nurses, anesthesiologists, and surgeons who fail to provide medical care that meets the minimal acceptable standard of care. If your surgical team denies you this standard of care and you suffer harm because of it, that’s surgical malpractice. When surgery errors occur, it takes an experienced surgical malpractice lawyer to represent the cause of the victim.
Let’s be clear: if you were harmed because of a surgical error that should have been avoided, you are a victim. You may suffer physically through the loss of a limb, an unnecessary infection, or brain damage. You may suffer emotionally through the psychological effects of a surgical error. Or tragically, someone you love may even have paid the ultimate price: wrongful death caused by a surgeon’s negligence.
Whatever the case, Hannon Legal Group is experienced at handling all kinds of medical malpractice cases in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Palm Beach, and other parts of Florida, including surgical malpractice and surgery errors.When Does A Bad Surgical Outcome Become Surgical Malpractice In Florida
If you have suffered harm because your physician, surgeon, or surgical team did one of the following, you may be the victim of surgical malpractice:
- Act inattentively toward you and your condition
- Cause damage to parts of your body that were not even being operated on, as when a surgeon cuts or perforates the intestines while performing abdominal surgery
- Discharge you from the hospital prematurely
- Disregard your patient history or fail to take an appropriately comprehensive patient history
- Fail to advise you of all potential risks
- Fail to appropriately follow up with you after surgery
- Fail to recognize your symptoms or misdiagnosing you
- Fail to construct an appropriate surgical plan for you
- Make reckless decisions under pressure
- Misread or ignore your laboratory results
- Negligently leave surgical instruments, sponges, or towels inside you
- Negligent sanitary preparation for your surgery
- Negligent use of surgical tool during your surgery
- Perform surgery on the wrong part of your body
- Perform an unnecessary surgery or surgeries on you
- Unnecessarily delay your surgery so that further complications result
When negligence occurs in the operating room as the result of the surgeon or another member of the surgical team, you can be harmed in many ways. For instance, one surgery error can lead to the need for additional surgeries which puts your well-being at increased risk. A surgical error could make you sick if there’s an infection. A surgical error might lead to the loss of an organ or body part. Or worse, surgical errors can lead to the loss of life.
Hannon Legal Group has compiled a brief list of some of the typical negative outcomes that surgical errors can lead to:
- Additional operations - If the damage caused by the negligent surgeon is severe enough, or if it isn’t discovered before the surgery is complete, the need may arise for corrective surgery (or surgeries) to fix the initial surgical error.
- Disfigurement - This includes scarring or the loss of arms, legs, bone or muscle tissue.
- Infection - Infections can happen when the medical staff fails to practice proper hygiene, either with themselves or with the surgical instruments used. It can also happen during “never events,” as when foreign objects like sponges or forceps are left inside a patient at the end of the surgery.
- Internal bleeding - This would happen when an artery or vein is unintentionally nicked or is not adequately sutured and the surgeon fails to correct this dangerous problem before the surgery is complete.
- Organ damage or nervous system damage - This may lead to further complications and potentially paralysis.
- Wrong patient surgery - This happens when an operation is performed on the wrong person. More than one victim can suffer the consequences of this terrible kind of mistake.
When doctors, nurses, surgeons, or the staff at a hospital or surgery center has acted negligently during or following your surgery and you have suffered harm because of it, damages can be awarded. Generally, they fall into the following categories:
- Loss of consortium - You have a right to expect affection, comfort, companionship and sexual relations with a spouse. However, if surgical malpractice has caused a loss in anyone of these areas, you may be compensated for the loss. Typically, damages of this type are awarded in situations where permanent or life-changing injuries have been suffered.
- Loss of earning capacity - You need to be able to work, earn money, and make a living. If your ability to do that has been damaged by surgical negligence, either temporarily or permanently, you can be compensated to make up for this loss of earning capacity.
- Lost wages - Sometimes, a surgical error will mean a patient must miss work to recover from the injury. If that’s the case with you, you can be compensated for the lost salary or wages you had to do without.
- Medical expenses - Many times, a surgical error will lead to additional medical treatments that would have been unnecessary otherwise. When that’s the case, a medical malpractice victim can be compensated for the cost of assistive devices, hospital stays, doctor visits, OT, PT, prescription drugs, surgery, or other healthcare expenses. If the injury is severe enough or permanent, you may also be awarded compensation for medical expenses that could arise in the future.
- Pain and suffering - Pain and suffering as the result of surgical malpractice are very real. If you’re a victim, you can receive compensation for for emotional distress, including fear, frustration, depression, anxiety and other kinds of mental suffering.
- Other kinds of damages - This is not a comprehensive list. Hannon Legal Group can help you determine what sort of damages you can expect, based on the details of your particular post-surgical error malpractice case, as each case is unique.
The malpractice lawyers at Hannon Legal Group have years of experience aggressively advocating for the rights of people just like you. Contact us today for a free consultation about your particular situation. Call (305) 358-3109 to speak with a surgery malpractice attorney or complete and submit a contact form.