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Why do surgical errors occur?

On Behalf of | Jun 24, 2023 | Medical Malpractice

Negligence should not happen in any profession, especially in the medical field. Medical malpractice can be life-threatening, yet errors occur in almost all hospital departments, including operating rooms. 

Surgical errors – performing the wrong procedure, operating the wrong site, operating on the wrong patient, performing unnecessary surgeries, leaving foreign objects in a patient’s body, injuring adjacent organs and anesthesia errors – happen more frequently than you may believe.

Here are three reasons they happen:

1. Incompetence

A surgeon who is not trained or skilled to perform a particular procedure can be considered incompetent, hence should not do it. They should refer a patient to a physician who specializes in the process. However, this is not always the case. A surgeon may perform the procedure and potentially harm the patient.

2. Hospital negligence

A hospital may contribute to a surgical error. For example, to make more profits, hospital management may encourage surgeons to perform surgeries faster so they can push through more patients. This is highly unethical, yet it happens.

Other forms of hospital negligence that can lead to surgical errors are inadequate staffing, poor hygiene and poor transfer of patients between departments.

3. Fatigue

A surgeon should not perform many procedures in a day, particularly complex ones. They need adequate time to relax between operations. However, this may be impossible due to inadequate staffing or poor work schedules.  

A physician may be scheduled to perform several procedures with little to no rest. This can lead to fatigue, which can increase the chances of making mistakes.

If you suffer an injury due to a surgeon’s or hospital’s negligence, you should get legal help to fight for your rights.