Surgeons and other medical professionals sometimes make mistakes despite their special expertise. While operations often have inherent risks, some surgery-related injuries should not happen. The medical malpractice lawyers at Frankl & Kominsky provide dedicated representation to victims of surgical errors in the Boynton Beach area. We are seasoned litigators who passionately believe in helping ordinary people assert their rights. We can help you if a surgeon’s mistake caused you harm.Common Types of Surgical Errors
While recognizing that complications may happen, patients expect their surgeons and medical staff to use the utmost care. Unfortunately, errors in the operating room occur all too often. A 2013 USA Today article, for example, estimated that 4,500 to 6,000 incidents of lost surgical objects occur each year.
Examples of surgical mistakes include:
- Operating on the wrong part of the body;
- Operating on the wrong patient;
- Using improper surgical instruments or techniques;
- Administering anesthesia incorrectly;
- Inadequately monitoring a patient;
- Leaving surgical instruments, sponges, or other material inside the patient; or
- Failing to provide adequate post-operative care.
Surgical errors can lead to infections, internal organ damage, and death in some cases. When one of these mistakes occurs, not only the physician but also the health care provider may be responsible for a patient’s injury.Holding Careless Doctors and Hospitals Accountable
If you were hurt by a surgical error, you can hold the surgeon, hospital, and medical staff liable for their carelessness by filing a medical malpractice claim. This requires proving duty of care, breach, causation, and damages.
In most personal injury cases, the standard of care that applies is that of a reasonably prudent person. Medical malpractice cases, however, require a different level of care. You must show that the defendant deviated from the conduct that a medical professional, with the same qualifications and under similar circumstances, would find acceptable and appropriate. In other words, you have to show that the defendant failed to use the applicable professional standard of care. This requires the testimony of experts who can discuss what the typical doctor would have done in your particular case.
Some surgical errors are so far below the appropriate standard of care that they could only happen because of negligence. Leaving a sponge inside the body, for example, doesn’t occur unless someone in the operating room acted carelessly. In these types of cases, you may prove your claim under the doctrine of res ipsa loquitor, which means “the thing speaks for itself.” You would have to show that your injury was the type that usually does not have happen without negligent conduct. The defendant must also have had exclusive control of the object that caused the injury, although this rule is leniently applied in situations when a patient is unconscious. An experienced medical malpractice attorney can discuss what theories of liability may be applicable in your case.
Surgical errors can require additional operations and have long-term effects on your health. You may be entitled to damages based on the extent of your injuries. You can seek compensation for current and future medical expenses, lost income, loss in future earnings, pain and suffering, and more. Florida medical malpractice claims must be filed within two years from when the harm occurred or from when it was discovered. If it has been more than four years from the date of the injury, you may not be able to file a claim. An attorney experienced in handling medical malpractice lawsuits can help you secure your rights before the statute of limitations expires.Legal Guidance for Medical Negligence Cases in South Florida
If you are a victim of a surgical error, the medical injury attorneys at Frankl & Kominsky may be able to help you. Serving clients throughout South Florida, we can offer the tireless advocacy you need to hold a health care provider accountable for your injuries. Our team can examine your files, consult with experts, and review the hospital’s records to build your case. We represent victims of medical malpractice in Delray Beach, Coral Springs, and Miami, among other Florida cities. Call us at (855) 800-8000 or complete our online form for a no-obligation consultation. We are fluent in Spanish and Creole.