Our Philadelphia medical malpractice lawyers have witnessed the most traumatic and devastating events that can occur as a result of Anesthesia error and Anesthesia malpractice. Anesthesia is normally administered or supervised by an anesthesiologist, a doctor whose specialty is medically inducing sedation or sleep using a variety of medications to prevent a patient from feeling pain while in surgery. The anesthesiologist’s job is to monitor a patients heart rate, blood pressure, blood circulation, breathing, and body temperature during surgery preventing anesthesia complications and anesthesia error.
According to statistics hundreds of people are the victims of anesthesia errors every day. More than 200 individuals daily, are victims of Anesthesia awareness. Anesthesia awareness occurs during the administration of anesthesia when a patient is administered a miscalculated dosage of medications that are supposed to keep them unconscious and free from feeling pain. As a result of the paralyzing agents of the anesthesia, the patient remains in a paralyzed state unable to move or communicate with the doctors operating on them, while they endure the pain of the entire surgery.
Errors Made by Anesthesiologists
Due to the high number of human errors made by anesthesiologists and anesthesia technicians when using anesthesia machines, the danger of anesthesia machine failure or defects poses a significant risk to patients. Studies investigating the frequency and causes of anesthesia machine error and anesthesia machine failure have found that the most common manufacturer defects found in anesthesia machines involve faulty tubes and hoses leaking intoxicating gases, and disrupting the flow of oxygen and other medications patients receive. Additionally electrical and computer errors have been reported, at times compromising automated calculations and other information that ensure patient safety.
Many times anesthesia machine failure is the result of human error. Common errors made by anesthesiologists, and anesthesia technicians working in hospitals and surgical centers, include the failure to regularly train and familiarize themselves with anesthesia machines and equipment, failure to perform routine maintenance on all systems involved in administering anesthesia, the failure to properly install equipment, and incorrectly monitoring, operating, and setting up the machine.
The results of anesthesiologist mistakes and anesthesiologist errors can be devastating, often resulting in permanent injury, brain dysfunction, paralysis, blindness, sensory losses, and in the worst cases wrongful death. The most common injuries and occurrences of anesthesia malpractice and anesthesia error include but are not limited too;
- Anesthesia awareness resulting in nervous damage
- Failure to monitor a patients consciousness
- Loss of sensory ability
- Wrongful death
- Oxygen deprivation
- Faulty or broken surgical table, resulting in the patient falling or sustaining injuries while under anesthesia
- Anesthesia dosage error
- Use of improperly labeled medication
- Failure to record a patients medical history
- Failure to review patients medical history
- Anesthesiologists failure to review patients allergy chart
- Overdosing a patient with anesthesia medications
- Failure to monitor patients vital signs
- Failure to give a patient pre-operative instructions about not eating before surgery
- Faulty monitors and faulty alarms
- Shutting off pulse oximeter alarm
- Use of expired medication
- Unsterile equipment
- Prolonged sedation
- Failure to intubate resulting in oxygen deprivation
- Negligent intubation resulting in the intubation tube being placed into the patient’s stomach
- Brain damage
- Loss of neurological and sensory function
- Spinal cord injuries
- Trachea injuries as a result of negligent intubation
Lately, there has been an increasingly high number of anesthesia malpractice incidents occurring at ambulatory care surgical centers. Unfortunately, many ambulatory surgery centers do not meet federal safety standards which has lead to serious and catastrophic consequences for patients. The following list includes but is not limited to common errors occurring in ambulatory care surgical centers resulting in anesthesia injuries to patients and medical malpractice including but not limited too;
- using medical supplies and medications with expired expiration dates,
- administration of the wrong drug,
- failure to monitor errors,
- failure to documenting allergies,
- confusion or mix up involving ophthalmology products of different pharmacological categories,
- differentiating lookalike products,
- operating on the wrong body part or wrong patient,
- surgical site infections,
- failure to prophylactically deliver antibiotics.
Sadly, the major excuse for anesthesia error and anesthesia malpractice is negligence on the part of the anesthesiologists, operating physicians and other medical technicians when caring for their patients. When a preventable anesthesia error or complication arises as the result of medical negligence, the operating doctor, anesthesiologist, medical facility, and hospital may be liable for damages sustained by you or a loved one.
The experienced Pennsylvania anesthesia error, anesthesia complication and medical malpractice lawyers of The Reiff Law Firm have spent over three decades successfully representing generations of Pennsylvanians who have sustained catastrophic injuries and wrongful death as a result of medical negligence. We understand the significant physical, emotional, and economic hurdles that victims and their families must overcome when they become the victims of anesthesia and medical errors. Our expert team of Pennsylvania hospital malpractice lawyers work with an in-house team of skilled experts, registered nurses, and doctor lawyers who have over 50 years of experience caring for anesthesia error and anesthesia complication victims.
Our medical malpractice lawyers are greedy for justice. If you or a loved one has been in a catastrophic accident and suffered oxygen deprivation or other anesthesia-related error, please feel free to contact one of our Anesthesia error medical malpractice lawyers for a confidential free, no obligation consultation online or toll-free.