At some point in your life, you likely needed some sort of medical attention. Though medical professionals' duties involve helping you and other people to the best of their abilities in hopes of addressing your medical ailments, it may prove difficult to place complete trust in physicians, surgeons, nurses and other hospital staff. This wariness may seem warranted as placing your life in the hands of other people likely does not feel like the most comfortable or natural experience.
Having mixed feelings when it comes to undergoing a surgical procedure occurs with many individuals. Unfortunately, when on the operating table and even afterward, you could face risks of suffering serious injuries due to medical mistakes. Some common injury and illness-causing errors include:
- Left-behind foreign objects: Doctors and surgical aids use many tools during surgeries. Approximately 4,000 patients face complications each year due to medical professionals leaving medical instruments inside those patients after surgery. Surgical sponges come in as the most commonly left behind item. These items can easily result in patients suffering infections and other preventable complications that negatively affect their health.
- Lack of proper hygiene: If doctors, nurses and other staff do not properly wash their hands and instruments or fail to carry out other necessary hygiene protocols before surgery, they run the risk of allowing bacteria and other contaminants to infect the patient. Infections result in the fatalities of nearly 100,000 individuals in the United States every year.
- Surgery mix-ups: In some cases, doctors may even perform surgery on the wrong patient or on the wrong area of the correct patient. As a result, not only is the original issue not properly attended to, but patients also end up needing to recover from unnecessary procedures. Obviously, this type of mistake disappears if staff reviews patient records and surgery information before beginning the operation.
These issues act as only a few of the errors that could seriously affect you as a patient. You could face negative effects due to additional mistakes and have to deal with outcomes that considerably hamper your daily life. Moreover, the medical costs associated with any additional procedures you may need to correct issues created by the medical mistakes could leave you with a substantial financial burden.
The aftermath of such a traumatizing event could cause you to consider various methods of potentially gaining compensation for the problems you have endured. Depending on your specific circumstances, you may have cause to pursue a legal claim for medical malpractice.
A successful claim could assist you in gaining much-needed compensation. Therefore, in order to understand your legal options fully, you may wish to speak with an experienced Massachusetts attorney.