If you are undergoing any type of surgery or invasive procedure, anesthesia is a beautiful thing. Anesthesia is a pharmacologically induced state which blocks pain and protects patients from stress-induced complications during medical procedures. Anesthesia comes in various levels or forms, including general, regional or local. In all cases, it is meant for good not harm.
The administration of anesthesia requires keen knowledge and careful delivery. Unfortunately, errors do occur within anesthesia, and the result could be serious harm or even death. While anesthesia can be viewed as a “luxury” during surgery, it is also the reason why many surgeries are considered risky. In fact, an anesthesia mistake can be more dangerous than a mistake made within the actual procedure itself.
According to Indian Journal of Anaesthesia, “human error is believed to be a factor in 65-87% of deaths that occur under anesthesia.” While the risk of anesthesia complications increases for patients who are older, ill or undergoing emergency surgery, the responsibility to avoid human error while administering anesthesia remains the same.
What’s at Stake?
Anesthesia errors are rarely insignificant. Just slight negligence or minor mistakes can cause very serious harm. Consequences often include damage to the brain or nervous system, which can permanently impact one’s quality of life. Brain damage can result in physical paralysis or cognitive, memory and speech impairments, and when too much anesthesia is given (overdose), fatality can occur.
Anesthesia Errors Equals Medical Malpractice
Anesthesia cannot be administered by just anyone. It requires specialized training and a specific certification that holds the anesthesiologist responsible in several ways. Like any medical provider, failure or negligence to uphold these responsibilities can result in a medical malpractice lawsuit against the anesthesiologist.
The following are examples of anesthesia malpractice:
- Administering the wrong dose of anesthesia, giving too much or too little.
- Administering the wrong type of anesthesia.
- Improper induction or failure to put a patient under anesthesia.
- Failure to investigate the patient’s medical history.
- Failure to properly monitor the patient’s vital signs during surgery.
- Failure to properly manage the administration of blood, fluids and medications.
- Failure to help surgeon ensure proper patient positioning during surgery.
- Failure to ensure patient has fully recovered from the anesthesia and is safe to be transferred or discharged.
- Failure to fully inform the patient of the risks of surgery and anesthesia.
- Using defective equipment or equipment that is not properly labeled.
Are You a Victim? Call Kevin P. Race
If you suspect that you or someone you know has been the victim of Anesthesia Malpractice, contact the Kevin Race Law Firm. Attorney Kevin Race has handled cases involving hypoxia, overdose and toxicity due to anesthesia. We are prepared to consult with the anesthesiologists, CRNAs or other medical providers as well as investigate medical records involved in your case to determine if there was anesthesia errors and grounds for a medical malpractice claim. Call Kevin Race Law Firm today!
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