Did you really need that surgery your doctor said you did?

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Legally reviewed by:
Steven R. Davis and John A. Davis, Jr.
August 4, 2023

Trust. That is what you give your doctors when you have a medical problem that causes you pain, diminishes your quality of life and even threatens your life. As part of the discussion about your treatment, someone may have mentioned surgery.

In many cases, this could be a necessary part of your treatment. However, if there is a chance that surgery doesn’t have to happen, what if your surgeon fails to share that important piece of information? You could end up going through an unnecessary surgical procedure. To make matters worse, something could go wrong during the operation, which could leave you harmed and with larger health issues than you originally had.

Why would your surgeon operate on you unnecessarily?

According to one medical insider, greed plays a large role in the reason. Surgeons only make money when they perform procedures, and they can make quite a lot of money doing it. If a chance exists that the procedure could be a valid treatment option, your surgeon may push you into it.

In other cases, a lack of knowledge regarding alternatives to surgery could cause your surgeon to push the issue. When you ask whether other options could resolve your issue, he or she probably doesn’t know. In order to avoid appearing as if he or she doesn’t have all the answers, your surgeon may have used the position of authority that comes with being a doctor to persuade you that you had no other option.

Common surgeries that may not be necessary

Some surgeries have become commonplace because doctors perform so many of the procedures. Just how many are actually medically necessary? It may surprise you to discover that a plethora of data exists regarding how many surgeries are unnecessary. Many of the following procedures probably didn’t need to happen:

  • Pacemakers save lives, but approximately 22.5 percent of them were unnecessary.
  • Hysterectomies are common, but around 70 percent of them may have been the wrong treatment. 
  • Arthroscopic surgery means to repair the buffer cartilage in your knee, but it rarely corrects the problem.
  • Supporting neurological tests or medical scans did not happen in 17 percent of spinal fusion operations.
  • Unwarranted angioplasties with stents took place in 12 percent of cases.

You may find it shocking to learn that three surgeons in Pennsylvania actually attempted to remove the gall bladders of patients who had already had that organ removed during a prior procedure. Even if your surgery is not part of this list, it does not mean that it was the proper course of treatment for your condition.

A surgical error occurred during your unnecessary procedure

You believed your surgeon when he or she told you that the surgery needed to happen in order to treat your ailment, so you agreed because of your trust in your medical team. Then you suffered from a surgical error that put your life in jeopardy, caused you harm and required additional medical care (and possibly surgery) to fix — that is, if the error was even fixable.

Even if the primary threat to your life resolved, you could now live with permanent injuries, scars and disabilities. If you suspect that you suffered harm due to a medical error that occurred during an unnecessary surgery, it may be worth your while to obtain an evaluation of your case to determine if legal action is appropriate.

John A. Davis, Jr.


John A. Davis, Jr. and Steven R. Davis

August 4 2023

Steven R. Davis and John A. Davis, Jr. are experienced attorneys at Davis & Davis, a law firm that specializes in medical malpractice cases in Texas. With a deep commitment to justice that guides their ethical approach, Davis and Davis have dedicated their careers to helping victims of medical negligence. They and their team continue to advocate for clients, despite the challenges posed by Texas's cap on recoverable damages in malpractice lawsuits. Davis & Davis pride themselves on their extensive experience in the field and their readiness to meet clients across the United States.

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