Without a doubt, one of the greatest achievements of medicine in today’s world is having the knowledge and technology to provide safe and effective anesthesia for a patient undergoing surgery. Anesthesia must be administered with attention, precision, and care to avoid harm to the patient. Due to how complex anesthesia can be, there are medical personnel called anesthesiologists who have the responsibility to monitor the patient’s functioning during the surgical procedure. 

Every surgery comes along with risks. Patients must be informed about these risks before agreeing to the surgery. And while a poor result after the procedure doesn’t automatically mean medical malpractice occurred, it is certainly possible that the anesthesiologist or doctor made a mistake that led to the negative outcome. 

Common Errors For Anesthesia

A doctor or anesthesiologists that committed medical malpractice during surgery, which ultimately led to a patient getting hurt, may be held liable for losses and damages. Of all the ways that malpractice of anesthesia may occur, it isn’t uncommon for the patient to have been improperly evaluated from the very start. Other mistakes happen while the patient is undergoing the operation. Examples of common anesthesia errors include: 

  • Failing to administer oxygen properly during surgery
  • Failing to react promptly to oxygenation issues
  • Failing to monitor the patient
  • Administering too much anesthesia
  • Failing to inform the patient of pre-surgery care, such as not eating or drinking a certain number of hours before the procedure
  • Administering anesthesia to a patient that is allergic
  • Using defective medical tools during sedation
  • Poor product labeling 

Anesthesia Malpractice Injuries

When a patient is not taken care of properly by the doctor and/or anesthesiologists regarding a surgery, the patient can face very severe and long-term injuries. If you or someone you love awoke from a surgery harmed and you suspect an error was made by the surgical team, then it’s time to meet with an attorney for guidance on what to do next. Anesthesia malpractice can lead to the following injuries:

  • Stroke
  • Birth Defects
  • Nerve Damage
  • Heart Attack
  • Brain Injury
  • Paralysis
  • Coma
  • Spinal Cord Injury
  • Fatality

Emotional/Mental Injuries

A real possibility that is terrifying to imagine, would be if the anesthesiologists did not use enough anesthesia to sufficiently keep the patient under sedation. What can happen is the patient begins to wake up, gains awareness of what’s going on around them, or can feel pain sensation during the surgery. As horrifying as this is to think about, victims must understand their rights to seeking compensation for what they endured. Anesthesia awareness can result in life-long emotional and mental damage, including:

  • Sleep Disorders (Insomnia, sleeping too much)
  • Flashbacks
  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Anxiety and Panic Disorders
  • Extreme Fear (particularly in medical settings)

A mistake during surgery can leave profoundly negative impacts on the patient who may have endured physical and/or emotional injuries due to the error. If this sounds like something you or a loved one went through, contacting a medical malpractice attorney, could help you better understand your legal options.