On May 22, 2012, a Connecticut medical malpractice case was filed on behalf of an elderly woman who had a pacemaker implanted in a Connecticut hospital during February, 2010, after which she fell from the operating room table, causing her to suffer a traumatic brain injury, a fractured pelvis, a fractured clavicle, and other injuries. Evidently the surgical procedure itself went well but after the procedure the operating room staff allegedly failed to properly monitor and protect the woman from falling off of the operating room table.
The woman’s medical malpractice claim alleges that the operating room table was not placed in its lowest position before the woman repositioned herself, in violation of the hospital’s policies and procedures, and that the woman was at an increased risk of falling due to the effect of the medications that she had been given for the surgery, which had not fully worn off before her fall.
The now 81-year-old woman, who retired from the FBI as an administrator, use to live independently and travel extensively before her fall. Since her fall and her resulting serious injuries, she has had to re-learn to walk, she had to move out of her own home, she can no longer drive, and she has difficulty climbing stairs. In short, she has lost her independence and must rely on others for assistance with her activities of daily living.
Operating room mistakes due to medical negligence are not uncommon. The surgeons or supporting surgical staff may commit medical malpractice before, during, or after the surgery: the wrong medications or wrong dosages may be given; necessary medications may not be stocked or available in the operating room; the response to the patient’s condition may be improper or untimely; surgical equipment may not be maintained or used properly (or the necessary equipment may be missing from the operating room); equipment may malfunction; the proper surgical techniques may not be employed; etc.
Unfortunately for many surgical patients, the medical malpractice that occurs in the operating room may happen while the patient is unconscious or sedated, thereby making it more difficult for the patient to discover the cause of his/her injuries arising from the unanticipated surgical outcome. Often the surgical records, which may be authored by the medical staff responsible for the medical malpractice, either do not reference or document the medical negligence that occurred, or fail to document in sufficient detail the cause or effect of medical mistakes or medical errors so that patients and their legal representatives are unable to determine what occurred and why.
If you may be the victim of surgical negligence, you should promptly consult with a local medical malpractice attorney who may be able to investigate your possible medical malpractice claim for you and file a medical malpractice case on your behalf, if appropriate.
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