Anesthesiologists have one of the most important jobs in the operating room. During surgery, it is the anesthesiologist’s job not only to administer the anesthesia, but also to control and monitor the patient’s heart rate, breathing and all other critical life functions. Naturally, when the anesthesiologist makes an error or mistake, it can result in catastrophic, if not fatal, injuries to the patient.
If you or a family member is suffering from a serious injury or health complication as the result of an anesthesia error, you should speak with an experienced Nashville anesthesia error and medical malpractice attorneys at DRS Law about your legal rights and options.
You may have grounds to file a medical malpractice lawsuit and recover compensation for your medical bills, pain and suffering, mental anguish, lost wages, and decreased quality of life. If your loved one has died due to an anesthesia error, you can speak with an attorney about filing a wrongful death claim.
Examples of Anesthesia Errors
- Inadequate drug dosing. Administering too much or too little anesthesia can be dangerous. Too much anesthesia can lead to respiratory depression or cardiac arrest, while too little anesthesia can allow the patient to feel pain or even wake up during surgery.
- Poor monitoring. Patients must be monitorly closely to ensure that they are receiving the correct amount of anesthesia and that their vital signs are stable. Monitoring errors can lead to undetected complications, such as low blood pressure or heart arrhythmias.
- Insufficient training. Anesthesiologists are trained to recognize and respond to complications during anesthesia. However, errors can occur, such as failing to recognize a patient’s airway is blocked or failing to respond to a drop in blood pressure.
- Machine misuse or malfunction. Intubation is the process of inserting a breathing tube into the trachea (windpipe). Errors during intubation can cause damage to the teeth, lips, or throat, or even block the airway.
- Aspiration. Aspiration is the accidental inhalation of food, liquid, or vomit into the lungs. This can lead to pneumonia, lung damage, or even death.
When under anesthesia, the patient places their trust in the anesthesiologist to slow their body down to the point of near death, while controlling the levels to make sure they do not experience pain from the medical procedure. Doctors specializing in anesthesia can make mistakes if they fail to follow the proper standards of medical care.
According to a 2009 study in the medical journal Anesthesiology, there were more than 2,200 anesthesia deaths between 1999 and 2005. Anesthesia was found to be the underlying cause in about 34 deaths every year in the United States and a contributing factor in about 281 other deaths. A little over 46% of the deaths are caused by anesthesia overdose, with the other deaths attributed to different anesthesia complications.
What to Know about Anesthesia Error Lawsuits?
Cases involving anesthesia errors are difficult to win and require a knowledgable and experienced medical malpractice attorney. The Nashville anesthesia error attorneys at DRS Law have extensive experience handling medical malpractice claims and are available to assess your case for free.
Below are a few steps you can take to help our team determine whether you have a viable anesthesia error claim:
- Request all medical records relating to your injury, including the records from the surgery and the anesthesia.
- Get copies of any reports or studies that were done on you before, during, or after the surgery.
- Talk to your doctor or other healthcare providers about your injury and how it may have been caused by the anesthesia.
- Keep a detailed record of your symptoms and how they have affected your life.
To win your anesthesia malpractice case. you will have to prove these elements:
- You suffered an injury during or after anesthesia.
- A medical provider made a mistake that other anesthesiologists would consider to be below the standard of care.
- The mistake caused your injury.
- You have suffered damages because of your injury.
Choosing an Anestheisa Error Attorney
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