A study released in October 2015 showed that medication mistakes have occurred in 124 out of 277 surgical operations that were conducted in the United States last year alone, with almost 50% of all surgeries involving at least one medication error or adverse drug event, or 193 medication errors occurring in the 3,675 medications administered.
The study is “the first large-scale look at medication errors in the time immediately before, during, and directly after surgery,” said Dr. Karen Nanji, Harvard Medical School’s assistant professor of anesthesia, which was confirmed by Yale University Prevention Research Center director Dr. David Katz.
Other findings showed that two-thirds of the medication errors were categorized as “serious” and 2% were deemed “life-threatening”.
The study identified the following as the most common types of medication error during a surgery: incorrect dosing; drug documentation mistakes; failure on the part of physicians and nurses to monitor and address the changes to a patient’s vital signs; and drug labeling mistakes.
Attorneys at the Abel Law Firm say some wrong actions that a physician performing a surgery might do include leaving a foreign object –such as a towel, a sponge, or a surgical apparatus – inside a patient’s body; making errors in performing the procedure itself; and performing the procedure on the wrong body part.
Medical malpractice cases are very problematic in the sense that there is complexity when it comes to proving that the doctors, nurses, or the medical institutions are accountable for one’s worsened medical condition. For one, they can make the patient lost in all the medical jargon thrown at them by the medical practitioners claiming innocence. For another, such institutions find it easy to hire the best and the brightest minds in the legal profession to come to their rescue in instances when a mishap is made.