Atlanta Medical Malpractice Lawyers Holding Doctors Accountable for Surgical Errors
When we are sick or have a serious health concern, we place our trust and our very lives in the hands of the medical system. Among doctors, surgeons are perhaps the most highly trained and the most highly regarded. When surgical errors harm rather than heal, our faith in the entire system is shaken, and serious medical problems often result. When this type of medical negligence occurs, the Atlanta surgical error attorneys at Henry Spiegel Milling put their knowledge, resources, and decades of experience to work holding healthcare providers accountable for their mistakes and seeking maximum compensation for their victims.
Common Types of Surgical Errors
Hospitals call them “never events,” and while they certainly should never happen, surgical errors, medication errors, and other mistakes happen often enough that hospitals have a name for them and keep statistics on their occurrences. Some of the most common types of surgical errors include:
Foreign body objects – Sponges, clamps, hemostats, and other medical instruments and foreign objects may be accidentally left inside the patient’s body after surgery and sewn inside the patient. These objects can later cause severe pain, infection, and other serious medical complications. Most often they are not discovered until the pain or complications have already set in.
Wrong site surgery – Due to a misreading of the patient’s chart, a switching of charts, or just plain carelessness, operations have been performed on the wrong side of the body, on the wrong organ, and even on the wrong patient. When wrong site surgery occurs, it may not be possible to perform the correct surgery for some time, needlessly prolonging a patient’s pain or the progression of a disease.
- Other surgical errors – Any surgery that is unnecessary or performed improperly or below the acceptable standard of care can be a basis for liability for any injuries or complications caused by the negligent conduct.
Medical Negligence Can Cause Serious Personal Injury or Wrongful Death
Surgeons are not the only medical professionals in the operating room, and any member of the surgical team may commit surgical errors. The nurse, anesthesiologist, or nurse anesthetist may all commit serious surgical mistakes which can cause any of the following grave conditions, among others:
- Sepsis or infection
- Internal bleeding
- Damage to internal organs
In addition to the medical professionals who took part in the malpractice, the hospital may also be liable for the negligent hiring or supervision of its employees, or for utilizing negligent or substandard procedures and practices which allow surgical errors to occur. (A complicated question often arises whether the surgeon is an employee of the hospital or an independent contractor with privileges to operate there, and an experienced medical malpractice attorney is needed to determine the extent of the hospital’s liability.)
Experienced Medical Malpractice Lawyers for Surgical Mistakes in Atlanta, Georgia and Nationwide
Medical malpractice is different in many ways from other personal injury cases, with a different statute of limitations to apply in certain instances, and a higher standard of proof required in certain cases. This higher standard can apply to surgical errors made during an operation, or following emergency medical care. In addition, a medical malpractice attorney must be able to communicate complicated medical expert testimony effectively to a jury and be able to understand and rebut the defense team’s medical experts.
The personal injury attorneys at Henry Spiegel Milling have decades of combined experience handling cases involving surgical errors and other types of medical negligence. In fact, our senior partner was honored as the Top Plaintiff’s Medical Malpractice Attorney in Atlanta by Best Lawyers in 2013. If you or a loved one has been injured through surgical error in Atlanta, Georgia or anywhere nationwide, call Henry Spiegel Milling LLP at (866) 959-3877 or contact us online for a free consultation. There is no attorney fee unless we recover for you through verdict or settlement.