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What Are the Most Common Surgical Errors?

March 27th, 2017
On behalf of David Bowling of The Bowling Christiansen Law Firm, A Professional Law Corporation posted in Medical Malpractice on Monday, March 27, 2017.

According to WebMD, doctors in the United States make more than 4,000 preventable surgical errors annually. These mistakes are called “never events” because they should not occur under any circumstances. Each year, medical workers and facilities pay out about $1.3 billion to malpractice victims and their families.




explains, there are many types of surgical errors. Common examples include operating on the wrong body part and leaving a sponge inside a patient. These mistakes can cause permanent disabilities, and they are often fatal.

If you think you were the victim of a surgical error and you sustained serious injuries as a result, turn to The Bowling Christiansen Law Firm. David A. Bowling is a medical malpractice attorney in Baton Rouge who will help you pursue the maximum compensation for medical bills, lost income, and non-economic damages. Call (504) 586-5200 to schedule a consultation.

Read on to learn about five of the most common surgical errors:

1. Leaving a Foreign Object inside a Patient

Complicated procedures require the surgical team to use a variety of tools including scalpels, clamps, sponges, and pads. Surgeons and nurses are responsible for keeping track of these tools; unfortunately, they are often left inside patients during surgery.

This is one of the most common surgical errors, and it often causes severe infections. Some victims require an additional surgery to remove the object.

2. Performing the Wrong Procedure

When you enter the hospital for a specific procedure, it is not unreasonable to expect doctors to perform the appropriate operation and then send you on your way. What if doctors perform the wrong procedure, though? Not only will you have to undergo the original procedure, but you may also need additional care to repair any damage that occurred from the first operation.

3. Operating at the Wrong Site

Sometimes surgeons perform the right procedure on the wrong body part. This kind of surgical error has led to horror stories such as the amputation of the incorrect limb.

4. Inflicting Nerve Damage

Surgical teams are often in direct contact with nerves and their surrounding tissue. Unfortunately, even a slight hand tremor when holding a scalpel can cause severe nerve damage and result in paralysis.

5. Administering Too Much Anesthesia

Anesthesia errors are often fatal. If the anesthesiologist gives a patient too much of the drug, it can deprive the brain of oxygen, resulting in brain damage and even death. In rare circumstances, a patient might have a bad reaction to anesthesia, but when an actual error occurs, the patient’s family has a right to pursue compensation.

If you or a loved one sustained debilitating injuries due to a botched surgical procedure, contact The Bowling Christiansen Law Firm. David A. Bowling is a spinal cord injury attorney in Baton Rouge with more than 30 years of trial experience.

Call (504) 586-5200 to schedule a consultation. Visit to learn more about medical malpractice claims in Louisiana.

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