American's see doctors for a variety of reasons. One person may go to the doctor for a flu shot while the other may have to see a doctor to have surgery on an internal ailment. While the reasons for the visit may be different, everyone goes to a doctor because they have the medical knowledge to treat these ailments. But if a doctor makes a mistake, it can lead to serious complications, especially if that mistake is a surgical error.
All surgeries can carry some risk because of the intricacy and delicacy needed for many procedures. But when a St. Louis woman went in to have brain surgery, she encountered a different risk, surgical error.
A medical malpractice suit was filed against the hospital where the surgery was performed and the surgeon. The suit claimed that the surgeon allegedly operated on the wrong side of her brain.
On April 4, she was scheduled for surgery on the left side of her brain. The surgery was actually preformed was on the right side. It was claimed that because of the surgery, she is unable to speak intelligibly. The operating team realized their error and preformed a second surgery on the left side of her brain less than a week later. The suit accuses the surgeon of negligence and carelessness in his performance of the surgery.
Prior to the surgery, the St. Louis women suffered from mini-strokes and the surgery was supposed to prevent any future strokes. Her ability to speak had been affected by a stroke in December but she was still able to communicate and be understood by others.
Patients put a lot of trust in medical staff when it comes to diagnosing and treatment. When a medical error occurs, the patient's life can be significantly altered.
Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch, "Lawsuit accuses surgeon of operating on wrong side of woman's brain," Jim Doyle, Apr. 30, 2013