There are few things more dreaded in surgery for a patient than a “never event” occurring, but that is exactly what happened to one Florida woman recently.
Maureen Pacheco went to the hospital to have spinal surgery. She had been in extreme pain after an accident four years before. Now, she was finally going to feel better. Her spinal surgeons decided to go in from the front of her body, a common procedure now. To do this, they brought in Dr. Ramon Vazquez, a general surgeon, to make a clear pathway to the site of the spine.
When he opened her up, he thought he saw a cancerous mass and made the decision, without consulting Pacheco, to remove it.
The mass turned out to be a perfectly functioning kidney that was just in the wrong location. He would have known about it had he looked at her MRI before operating. It clearly indicated that her kidney was there.
Surgical mistakes like this are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to problems that arise in the medical field. If you need a Cooper City medical malpractice attorney, you can count on the Law Offices of Bradley S. Hartman to be by your side.
What Can Happen?
Medical mistakes are the third leading cause of death in the United States. They kill, by some estimates, as many as 440,000 people annually. Those are staggering numbers.
One of the main culprits is a misdiagnosis. Whether a doctor is in a hurry because of ER overcrowding or they simply do not read a patient’s charts correctly, these mistakes are the leading cause of patient harm according to Johns Hopkins researchers. A misdiagnosis can lead to delayed treatment or even no treatment at all for some people.
We know that hospital-acquired infections are rampant in the medical field. Most of these infections are preventable, but many times medical professionals fail to follow proper protocol. If IV sites, open wounds, respiratory equipment, and surgical sites are not regularly monitored for signs of infection, this negligence can contribute to major health problems for patients. If an infection spreads and becomes septic, a patient is at risk of major complications, including death.
Surgical mistakes, as seen in the opening story, can be devastating. We hear about the “never events” because they are subject to mandatory reporting, but other surgical errors are much more common. Whether it is a perforation of the bowel, anesthesia problems, or another mistake, surgical mistakes can contribute to significant patient suffering.
Medication errors are common. This can include a patient not receiving their medications, receiving the wrong medications, or receiving the wrong dosage of their medications. Any of those mistakes can worsen a patient’s condition.
What Are Your Options
These are not the only ways medical mistakes can occur. If you are not sure about your case, seek out an experienced Cooper City medical malpractice attorney. At Law Offices of Bradley S. Hartman, we are ready to help. You can contact us by clicking here or calling us at 954-438-1000 for a free consultation