When patients are in the operating room, their lives are in the hands of not just their surgeons, but the entire surgical team, including the anesthesiologist. These highly trained medical professionals are tasked with keeping patients pain free—and often unconscious—during their surgical procedure. However, if the anesthesiologist makes a mistake such as administering too much or too little anesthesia, the consequences can be deadly.
Anesthesia mistakes and complications are fairly common. Of the more than 98,500 medical malpractice claims made between 2005 and 2013, nearly 2,700 were anesthesia related, according to the National Practitioner Data Bank (NPDB). Of the nearly 2,700 anesthesia claims, 37.6 percent of patients died.
Common Anesthesia Mistakes: Causes and Injuries
The operating room isn't the only place where anesthesia errors can occur—they can also happen during pre-operative preparation and in the recovery room. Common causes for anesthesia medical malpractice include judgment errors on the part of the anesthesiologist such as forgetting to inform the patient of food and beverage restrictions before surgery, administering the wrong dosage of anesthesia, and failing to adequately monitor the patient's vital signs during surgery. Anesthesia mistakes can also be caused by defective equipment or incorrect intubation.
When an anesthesiologist makes a mistake before, during, or after surgery, the resulting injuries can be devastating. Patients may suffer brain injuries, heart attacks, strokes, collapsed lungs, nerve damage, and in some cases, even death.
We Can Help
If you lost a loved one due to anesthesia-related medical malpractice and have questions, Holton Law Firm has answers. We can help you recover damages for medical bills, funeral and burial costs, pain and suffering, and loss of support. Contact our Memphis law office today to schedule an appointment for a free case consultation.