When it comes to medical treatment and surgical operations, discovering and diagnosing an issue is only half of the battle. Most of the time it is not the symptoms that the patient fears, but rather the treatment. In many cases of serious injury or illness, an operation may be performed in order to prevent further complications and hopefully cure a patient. However it isn’t always the surgery which may bring about more damages and worry to a patient, but rather the post-op care.
Post-op care, or postoperative treatment, is usually very strict and diligent in order to streamline the recovery process for a patient. After surgery, a patient has to undergo special treatment for incisions, system function regulation, and all around general care, before they can begin seeing normal aspects of their well being again. In the event that these standards of care towards post operation procedures aren’t met, a patient could fall victim to further complications and file a claim against the surgeon, nursing staff, and hospital, for medical malpractice.
There are many different types of post-op fallacies that could land a patient in more pain and worry than they may have initially been in before the surgery. One of the most common errors in after surgery care is lack of proper treatment to incisions and healing wounds. Whether it is stitched up, sewn together, stapled closed, or simple folded over until further operation, it is undeniably important that these vulnerable operation sites on a patient’s body are kept completely clean and sterile. The risk of an infection in an hospital is already very high due to the fact that there are hundreds of different pathogens and contaminants all hosted within the same building. This risk is then multiplied significantly when an open wound is not attended to properly and a patient is left on their hospital bed to await the correct aftercare treatment.
Another unfortunately common mistake that is made frequently in post-operative hospital rooms is inattentiveness to vitals and post-op evaluations. After an invasive surgery or extensive internal procedure, there will most likely have been some serious altercations to the state of a patient’s body. These changes can have numerous effects on their well being as a whole, and if warnings signs aren’t caught quick enough these effects could be severely negative and nearly life threatening. This is why many hospitals require a borderline militant routine of checking things like heart rate, blood pressure, blood sugar levels, and follow up with questions regarding a patient’s overall feeling. Even though a patient may feel fine and on their way to regaining their well being, there could be a serious problem developing inside them as a result of a surgical effect or even a surgical error that was overlooked. Should a nurse or doctor begin to ignore or overlook certain signs when checking on post-op patients, their carelessness might lead to complications that will cost the patient more time, money, and peace of mind.
Aftercare in a hospital is just as big a part of a patient’s overall procedure as the actual surgery is. It needs to be accurate, it needs to be precise, it needs to be double checked, and it could cause major issues should even the slightest thing be forgotten about or ignored. That is why medical professionals and specialist nurses train for years in order to be experienced and prepared for any and all treatments and post-operation requirements that fall on their chart. Medical malpractice is a serious issue in many hospitals with a large patient turnover rate. High traffic and a large number of operations and procedures that are trying to quickly recover patients so as to keep the beds in rotation can inevitably lead to careless mistakes, negligent care, and even bedside fatalities as a result of poor operation aftercare.
Just because hospitals are so large and see such a vast number of patients throughout the day does not mean that one patients care, whether it be pre-op or post-op, should mean any more or less than another’s. Often times medical malpractice claims can point to signs of slipping performance in a nursing staff due to things like exhaustion or workplace complacency. It is when these professionals are no longer alert and conscious of their tasks that mistakes can be made in a matter of minutes. These mistakes can sadly cost a patient their safety, security, and confidence in the treatment that they are paying large amounts of money for.
If you are a patient or have a family member or loved one that is undergoing postoperative treatment in a hospital, it is important to be aware of all the treatment you are entitled to as well as what you are receiving. Many times patients can be overwhelmed with the actual surgery or coping with medical news they have been informed of, and as a result become unaware of some of the errors and aftercare failures that are taking place. This is why keeping a close eye on the patient’s chart is very important, as well as talking thoroughly with every doctor that visits you. It is also not uncommon for the surgeon who operated on you or your loved on to make a personal visit in order to discuss the procedures that took place and the current state after the surgery. Asking questions and getting thorough explanations is a great way to keep both yourself informed and the staff on their toes so as to avoid further complications with your well being which could land them in a serious medical malpractice suit.
From changing bedpans to cleaning wounds, properly inspecting the body for bed sores to even adequately administering postoperative physical or occupational treatment, there are many different ways in which overlooking a step can mean serious complications or prolonged recovery. A personal injury law firm such as ours would never allow for the horrid act of postoperative negligence towards one of our clients to go unanswered. If you’ve been the victim of prominent medical malpractice, whether it be on a routine checkup or an extensive surgery, contact the law offices of Byrd Davis Alden & Henrichson, LLP today to speak with an expert attorney about what we can do for you.