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Doctor removed wrong organ, barred from surgical procedures

A doctor who removed the wrong organ has been barred from performing certain operations. The surgeon accidentally removed his patient's spleen, instead of his kidney, according to a report. Because of his surgical error, this surgeon is no longer allowed to practice medicine or perform surgical procedures on his own. In Louisiana, many medical malpractice cases are caused by surgical errors.

In addition to the ban on performing any surgical procedure, the doctor has also been banned specifically from performing nephrectomies. A nephrectomy is the surgical removal of a kidney, or of both kidneys.  Some are alarmed by the fact that, pending an investigation into the cause of the incident as well as whether the doctor is fit to practice medicine, the ban could be temporary.

While the doctor claims to have many people on his side, and his lawyer argues that there were extenuating circumstances in the incident, the victim has a right to seek compensation. It does not matter if a procedure was complicated, or a number of factors contributed to surgical errors, those errors still lead to a lot of pain, suffering and additional medical costs for the victim. Until the case is decided, this doctor can must work with a co-surgeon.

In cases where mistakes have been made in surgical procedures, the patient typically has the right to sue for damages in civil court. Holding a doctor responsible for mistakes is seen as protecting the public, and a patient suffering serious injury is generally entitled to damages based upon proof of medical malpractice. Louisiana residents who have been the victim of surgical errors can consult with a personal injury lawyer for advice about what legal steps may be appropriate to secure financial relief.

Source:, "Santa Ana doctor barred from certain surgeries after removing spleen instead of kidney", Courtney Perkes, March 21, 2017

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