Health care providers owe a duty of care to patients who undergo surgical procedures and are obligated to provide treatment that aligns with accepted standards of their profession.
If a preventable injury occurs before, during, or after surgery because a provider was negligent and failed to meet the duty of care, victims may have grounds for legal action.
The Becker Law Firm is a nationally recognized trial practice known for record-setting results in medical malpractice cases. If you or your loved one suffered an injury because of a surgical mistake, we can evaluate your options to pursue a financial recovery.
Why Choose The Becker Law Firm?
- Over $600 million in compensation recovered for clients.
- Ohio record for the largest personal injury settlement for a single plaintiff.
- Award-winning attorneys with over 100 years of combined experience.
- Multiple malpractice recoveries among the largest in Ohio history.
The Becker Law Firm is led by Attorney Mike Becker, a Certified Civil Trial Specialist and one of the nation’s most respected plaintiffs’ trial lawyers. Backed by experienced advocates, including attorneys who are also Registered Nurses, we have recovered millions for victims of medical mistakes and millions in malpractice cases turned down by other firms.
Discuss your case with a Cleveland surgical error attorney. The Becker Law Firm serves clients across Ohio and beyond and offers FREE consultations.
Surgical Mistakes & Victims’ Rights
We handle all types of surgical error cases, including claims that involve:
- Surgical tools and objects left behind
- Failure to recognize complications and respond appropriately
- Post-operative care errors and infections
- Wrong-site or wrong-body part operations
- Incorrect surgery performed
- Unnecessary surgery, including surgery arising from a misdiagnosis
- Anesthesia errors and medication errors
While surgical error claims often concern substandard care during or shortly after surgical procedures, others may arise from administrative negligence, hospital malpractice, or a series of errors prior to surgery. This can include cases of the wrong surgery being performed, surgery performed on the wrong body part, and unnecessary procedures caused by:
- Administrative errors, mistakes in the patient's records, or miscommunication.
- Mislabeling test results, mishandling biopsy samples, and other lab mistakes.
- Failures to accurately examine or test patients, interpret lab results, or diagnose a condition.
An Ohio surgical error attorney at The Becker Law Firm can help if you’re considering a claim following a serious injury you suspect was caused by negligence during an operation.
Surgical Site Infections
One of the more common types of infections that patients may develop in a hospital is a surgical site infection. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report that this kind of infection accounts for 31 percent of all hospital-acquired infections.
Factors that may contribute to an infection after surgery include:
- Unsterile equipment;
- Surgical team’s failure to wash hands and arms properly;
- Failure to wear sterile gloves, hair covers, gowns, and masks;
- Improper surgical site preparation;
- Lengthy procedures;
- Wound becoming dirty or contaminated;
- Unsterile drape over the patient; and
- Heavy traffic of medical personnel in the operating room.
Surgical site infections may be superficial (affecting only the area of the skin where the incision was made), deep (tissue underneath the incision), or may affect the internal organs in some cases. Further treatment, including additional surgery, may be necessary to treat the infection.
An infection in the surgical site is just one type of infection that patients may acquire. When they cause serious or life-threatening complications, there may be legal options available if the infection is the result of negligence and not simply an unavoidable risk of the surgery.
Informed Consent & Unauthorized Treatment
Patients have the right to make informed decisions about their care and must give their informed consent for any recommended treatment or surgery their provider intends to perform. To obtain informed consent, medical professionals must advise patients about information such as:
- Their medical condition
- Treatment options and alternatives
- Associated risks and the likelihood of success or failure
- The consequences of taking no action
When providers fail to obtain informed consent for non-emergency treatment, they may be liable for medical negligence and potentially for claims of unauthorized treatment or medical battery, which is the unauthorized touching of a patient’s person.
A lack of consent in and of itself is not enough to prevail in a claim, however. Patients must also demonstrate that:
- The physician failed to disclose risks and relevant information about the procedure.
- Had a reasonable patient (or the specific patient) been properly advised about their condition, treatment options, and risks, they would not have agreed to the procedure.
- An undisclosed risk or treatment occurred and caused the patient injury.
Unauthorized treatment can have serious consequences, including disability, disfigurement, or the delay or prevention of needed care. Because standards for claims involving informed consent vary by state, The Becker Law Firm can explain if you may have a claim based on the unique facts of your case.
Do I have a medical malpractice case for a surgical error?
Determining if you have a medical malpractice lawsuit for a surgical error or other surgery-related negligence will depend on the facts of your case. Generally, you may have a claim if:
- A duty of care existed, meaning you had a doctor-patient relationship with the provider.
- The duty was breached, which means the provider’s care failed to meet accepted standards. In other words, the provider failed to act in a manner a similarly experienced and trained provider would have acted under the same or similar circumstances.
- The breach of duty caused injury, which requires proof that if the provider upheld his or her duty of care, it is more likely than not that you wouldn’t have suffered an injury.
- You suffered actual damages as a result of medical negligence.
Because there are many different surgeries, associated risks, and variables relating to a patient’s condition and underlying circumstances, determining if a provider’s conduct amounted to negligence requires a personalized case review.
At The Becker Law Firm, our surgical error attorneys conduct in-depth investigations and work with experts who can provide testimony as to whether a surgeon’s work or other aspects of patient care fell below accepted standards.
We can help you better evaluate your rights and options during a personalized consultation.
How much are surgical error lawsuits worth?
The value of any medical malpractice action is also dependent on the specific facts involved. While every case is unique, victims of medical negligence may be entitled to compensation for:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Past and future lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Disability, disfigurement, and lost quality of life
- Other economic and non-economic losses.
Request a FREE Case Evaluation
The Becker Law Firm has cultivated a reputation for litigating highly complex and contested medical malpractice claims. Backed by over a century of experience, the insight of Certified Civil Trial Specialists, and a network of experts, our team has the resources to help victims take on powerful insurance companies and fight for the compensation they deserve.
To discuss a potential malpractice claim involving a surgical mistake, contact us to request a FREE consultation with one of our Cleveland attorneys.