Surgical Errors

Santa Fe Surgical Errors Attorneys

Helping Victims of Surgical Errors in Santa Fe & Throughout New Mexico

When you go into surgery, you trust that your surgeon will make the right decisions and perform the operation correctly. Unfortunately, surgeons and other medical professionals make mistakes, and surgical errors are one of the most common types of medical malpractice.

At James Wood Law, our surgical error lawyers in Santa Fe represent clients who have been injured due to negligent surgical care. We understand the complexities of these cases, and we know how to build strong claims against negligent surgeons and hospitals. We work tirelessly to help our clients obtain the maximum compensation they are owed.

If you or someone you love was harmed by a surgical error, you may be entitled to compensation. Call our (505) 906-6774 or contact us online to request a free, confidential consultation.

What Are Surgical Errors?

Surgical errors are mistakes that occur during a surgical procedure. These mistakes are usually preventable and occur due to negligence on the part of a surgeon, anesthesiologist, or other medical professional. When these errors occur, patients can suffer serious injuries and even death.

Some of the most common types of surgical errors include:

  • Wrong-site surgery: Also known as “never events,” wrong-site surgeries occur when a surgeon operates on the wrong body part or performs the wrong procedure. These mistakes are entirely preventable and are considered one of the most egregious forms of surgical malpractice.
  • Wrong-patient surgery: In some cases, surgeons perform operations on the wrong patient. This can occur when a patient is misidentified, or when a surgeon fails to review the patient’s chart and medical history.
  • Unnecessary surgery: Surgeons sometimes perform operations that are not medically necessary. This can occur when a surgeon misdiagnoses a patient’s condition, or when a surgeon performs an operation that the patient did not consent to.
  • Instruments left in the body: Surgeons and surgical teams sometimes leave sponges, clamps, and other surgical instruments in a patient’s body. This can cause serious complications and even death.
  • Nerve damage: Surgeons may accidentally cut or damage nerves during an operation. This can cause pain, numbness, and other complications.
  • Organ damage: Surgeons may accidentally cut or damage an organ during an operation. This can cause internal bleeding and other complications.
  • Post-operative infections: Infections are always a risk following surgery. However, when medical professionals fail to properly sterilize surgical equipment or follow other safety protocols, the risk of infection increases.
  • Anesthesia errors: Anesthesiologists sometimes make mistakes that can cause serious harm to patients. This can include giving a patient too much anesthesia, failing to monitor the patient during the procedure, and other errors.

Common Causes of Surgical Errors

Surgical errors can result from a variety of factors, some of which are systemic within the healthcare system while others may be specific to individual practitioners or circumstances. Here are some common causes of surgical errors:

  • Communication Issues: Poor communication among surgical team members, including surgeons, nurses, anesthesiologists, and other staff, can lead to misunderstandings, misinterpretations, and ultimately errors during surgery.
  • Fatigue and Stress: Surgeons and other healthcare professionals working long hours without adequate breaks are prone to fatigue, which can impair judgment and concentration, increasing the likelihood of errors.
  • Lack of Standardization: Inconsistent procedures and protocols within surgical teams or across different healthcare facilities can contribute to errors. Standardized protocols help ensure that all necessary steps are taken and reduce the risk of mistakes.
  • Inadequate Planning and Preparation: Rushed or insufficient preoperative planning, including incomplete patient assessments, inadequate review of medical histories, and failure to anticipate potential complications, can lead to errors during surgery.
  • Technical Errors: Mistakes made during the technical aspects of surgery, such as incorrect incisions, improper use of surgical instruments, or damage to surrounding tissues, can occur due to factors like lack of experience, distraction, or equipment malfunction.
  • Inadequate Training and Experience: Surgeons and other members of the surgical team may lack the necessary training, experience, or proficiency in certain procedures, increasing the risk of errors.
  • Distractions and Interruptions: Distractions in the operating room, such as noise, conversations, or equipment malfunctions, can divert attention from the surgical task at hand and lead to errors.
  • Poor Teamwork and Coordination: Dysfunction within the surgical team, including conflicts among team members, hierarchical issues, or lack of effective leadership, can hinder communication and coordination, increasing the risk of errors.
  • Inadequate Monitoring and Supervision: Insufficient monitoring of patients during surgery, including failure to detect changes in vital signs or complications, can result in delayed responses or inappropriate interventions, leading to adverse outcomes.
  • Systemic Issues: Problems within the broader healthcare system, such as understaffing, resource constraints, pressure to minimize costs, and inadequate infrastructure, can contribute to errors by creating environments where shortcuts are taken or where safety protocols are compromised.

Who is Liable for Surgical Errors?

When a patient is injured due to a surgical error, several parties may be liable for the patient’s injuries. This can include the surgeon, the anesthesiologist, the hospital, and other medical professionals.

Surgeons and other medical professionals can be held liable for surgical errors if they:

  • Failed to meet the accepted standard of care
  • Failed to properly communicate with the surgical team
  • Failed to properly diagnose the patient
  • Failed to warn the patient of the risks of surgery
  • Failed to obtain informed consent from the patient
  • Administered anesthesia improperly
  • Failed to properly monitor the patient during the procedure
  • Failed to properly sterilize surgical equipment
  • Failed to perform the correct procedure
  • Performed a procedure on the wrong body part

In some cases, the hospital that employs the surgeon or other medical professional may also be held liable for surgical errors. This can include cases where the hospital failed to properly screen or train the surgeon, where the hospital failed to properly sterilize surgical equipment, or where the hospital failed to properly monitor the patient during the procedure.

How Can a Surgical Errors Lawyer Help?

If you or someone you love was harmed by a surgical error, hiring a surgical error lawyer in Santa Fe is essential. At James Wood Law, we can review your medical records, consult with medical experts, and help you understand your rights and options. We can help you determine if you have a valid claim and help you take the right steps to obtain the compensation you are entitled to.

Our surgical errors lawyers in Santa Fe can help you seek compensation for:

  • Medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of earning capacity
  • Rehabilitation and therapy
  • Disfigurement and scarring
  • Pain and suffering
  • Disability
  • Reduced quality of life
  • Loss of consortium

Our team knows how to build strong claims against negligent surgeons and hospitals, and we have a proven track record of success. We are not afraid to take on large hospitals and insurance companies, and we will fight tirelessly to protect your rights and best interests at every stage of the legal process.

To schedule a free consultation, call our surgical error attorneys in Santa Fe at (505) 906-6774 or contact us online today. We represent clients in Santa Fe, Albuquerque, and throughout New Mexico.


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Why We Should Be Your First Choice

  • Multiple Verdicts and Settlements Obtained of $1 Million or More
  • Tried More Than 50 Cases to a Jury & Settled More Than 150 Cases
  • Board Certified Trial Lawyer by the National Board of Trial Advocacy
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