Medical Errors in Surgery: Most Common Preventable Mistakes and Legal Ramifications

Our St. Louis personal injury attorney at The Gogel Law Firm knows that no one seeks medical care expecting their condition to worsen. When a physician or team of doctors guides their Missouri patients to undergo surgery, it is to prioritize their health and well-being. Unfortunately, when negligence is a factor, that is not always the outcome.

According to the Harvard Business Review, medical errors in U.S. hospitals harm an estimated 1.2 million people annually. While not all those injuries occur during surgeries, things can go wrong once patients enter the operating room. According to a study published in Surgery, at least 4,000 surgical errors occur in the United States each year.

These errors are preventable, are not an anticipated risk associated with surgery, and may be considered medical malpractice.

Here, we discuss some of the most common types of surgical errors in Missouri and the U.S. and how we can help patients pursue the liable parties for their complete damages.

The Most Common Types of Surgical Errors in Missouri

What are the Most Common Types of Surgical Errors in Missouri?

Medical errors in surgery depend on the specific circumstances of each case but often include:

  • Poor Communication Among Surgical Team Members

Lack of communication or miscommunication among surgical team members can result in incorrect procedures, wrong medication doses, or failure to address patient concerns.

Performing surgery without obtaining proper informed consent from the patient, including advising them of potential risks and alternatives, can lead to legal and ethical issues.

Wrong-site surgery occurs when a surgeon operates on the wrong body part, such as the wrong limb or organ.

Administering too much or too little anesthesia or administering the wrong type of anesthesia can lead to complications during surgery.

Failure to accurately diagnose a condition requiring surgery or a misdiagnosis can lead to unnecessary procedures or delayed treatment, harming the patient.

Nerve damage during surgery can cause pain, numbness, weakness, or loss of function in the affected areas.

  • Organ Damage

Damage to organs or blood vessels during surgery can lead to internal bleeding, infection, or other complications.

  • Hemorrhage or Excessive Bleeding

Failure to control bleeding during surgery can result in hemorrhage, shock, and other life-threatening complications.

  • Healthcare-Associated Infections

Healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) are infections that patients acquire while receiving treatment. HAIs can involve various types of infections, including surgical site infections (SSIs), bloodstream infections, urinary tract infections (UTIs), pneumonia, and gastrointestinal infections.

  • Retained Surgical Items (RSIs)

Surgical instruments or sponges left inside the patient’s body after surgery can cause infections, pain, and other serious complications.

While these are not all the serious injuries or potentially fatal injuries that can occur during surgery, they are the most common. If you or someone you love has been injured during a surgical procedure in Missouri, contact our dedicated medical malpractice attorneys in St. Louis today for help.

How Can the Missouri Medical Malpractice Attorney at The Gogel Law Firm Help with My Claim?

Our St. Louis medical malpractice attorney, Jeremy Gogel, will assess the details of your case, including medical records, diagnostic tests, and other relevant evidence, to determine whether you have a viable claim against the surgeon, hospital, another healthcare provider, or a combination of parties.

We have the resources and expertise to conduct thorough investigations into your surgical injury’s circumstances and how it has impacted your daily activities and overall quality of life.

Medical malpractice cases often require expert testimony to establish the standard of care, causation, and extent of damages. We have access to a network of qualified medical experts who can provide expert opinions and testimony to support your case. 

Contact Our St. Louis Medical Malpractice Attorney Today

If you have been injured or lost a loved one because of surgical errors in Missouri, contact our St. Louis medical malpractice attorney today to review your case by calling (314)-370-8173 or online to schedule a free consultation.

Need legal help? Give us a call.


745 Old Ballas Road
St. Louis, MO 63141

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