What Happens If A Foreign Object Is Left In A Body After Surgery?
Surgery can be a scary experience, and the last thing anybody should have to deal with is a mistake made during an operation. Unfortunately, surgical errors do occur. Sometimes, foreign objects are left behind inside of a patient. If this has happened to you, Brown, Moore & Associates, PLLC is here to help. Our Charlotte foreign objects surgery error attorney will work to secure any compensation you are entitled to.
How Does This Happen?
There are various kinds of complications that can occur during surgeries, but perhaps one of the most severe is a retained object left inside of a patient after surgery. This is considered a “never event” for surgeries. That is, a foreign object should never be left behind inside of a patient.
Hospitals and surgical centers have a number of safeguards implemented in order to prevent retained objects in patients. However, there are times when mistakes are made, and this system breaks down. One thing is certain – this will almost always be a case of medical negligence.
Some of the most common items left behind in a patient after surgery include:
- Cotton Swabs
It is important to understand that there is usually no harm if an object falls into a patient or is inside of a patient during the surgery and is immediately removed. However, if these items remain inside the body, a patient will have a serious risk of developing infections. If an object with sharper edges, such as blades, pens, and scissors, is left behind, there is a risk of severe internal damage.
Hospitals have extensive systems in place to prevent this from occurring, but some of the most common causes of these errors include:
- Lack of communication between surgical staff.
- Not checking inside the patient or around the wound for objects before closing an incision.
- Failing to use X-rays or other imaging equipment to ensure there are no foreign objects present.
- Failing to adhere to standard counting procedures while the surgery is ongoing.
Medical malpractice cases involving foreign objects left behind in a patient have a longer statute of limitations than other medical malpractice claims. If the presence of a foreign object is discovered outside of the typical three-year medical malpractice statute of limitations, then the case must be filed within one year of discovery of the foreign object (no case may be filed after 10 years from the date that the underlying surgical error was made).
Let Out Team Get To Work On Your Behalf Today
If you or somebody you love has been injured after a surgeon left a foreign object inside the body, contact an attorney immediately. At Brown, Moore & Associates, PLLC, we have vast experience handling these types of cases and will work to secure any compensation you are entitled to. This can include:
- Coverage of all medical costs related to the mistake, including future medical expenses
- Recovery of lost income if you cannot work
- Pain and suffering/loss of enjoyment of life damages
- Loss of consortium damages
- Punitive damages against the medical provider or agency