Minnesota Retained Surgical Instruments Lawyer
Patients who undergo surgery are already feeling nervous, scared, and stressed. These feelings are increased when the surgery is a major one that involves back surgery, abdominal surgery, or joint surgery. The only relief they have is knowing the surgeon and other healthcare professionals have the skill and knowledge to perform the surgery properly. Although it is true that not all surgeries are successful, medical personnel should never cause a patient’s injuries to become worse.
Sadly, the anesthesiologists, surgeons, doctors, and nurses in operating rooms sometimes make mistakes. When they do, patients may suffer injuries that are long-lasting. In the worst of cases, wrongful death may even occur. One of the biggest errors healthcare professionals make is leaving tools inside the patient. If you have been hurt by a retained surgical instrument, our Minnesota retained instrument lawyers can help you pursue compensation for your injuries.
What are Common Retained Surgical Instruments?
Of all the surgical instruments that are left inside patients, sponges are the most common. By their very nature, sponges are absorbent and will absorb any surrounding fluid. As a result, they are very easy to overlook before the wound is closed. Still, sponges are not the only surgical tools left inside patients. Other commonly retained surgical instruments include:
- Drill bits and attachments
- Needles and syringes
- Plastic gloves
- Screwdrivers, saws, and knives
Any time a tool is left inside a patient, it is considered a foreign object and patients can file a medical malpractice claim to recover compensation for their losses.
How to Prove a Medical Malpractice Case
Medical malpractice cases are always difficult to prove, but those involving retained surgical instruments are sometimes easier to establish. When filing a medical malpractice claim, you must prove the following elements:
- The defendant, or healthcare professional, owed you a duty of care
- The defendant breached that duty
- You were injured as a result of the breach
By the time you go into surgery, the fact that the healthcare professionals in the operating room owed you a duty of care has already been established. The doctor/patient relationship has already been formed, meaning everyone in the room owes you a duty of care.
Proving the breach of duty is also relatively easy in these medical malpractice cases. An x-ray or other type of medical imaging scan can prove a surgical instrument was left inside, which is always a case of negligence. Lastly, you then only have to prove you sustained injuries, which you can do using medical reports and invoices for your treatment.
Still, even though proving these cases is easier than others, it is imperative that you work with a Minnesota medical malpractice lawyer. An attorney will know the laws that govern these cases and ensure you comply with them. For example, in Minnesota you must provide a certificate of merit provided by another healthcare professional. A lawyer will have a network of medical experts they can reach out to so you can obtain this certificate, which is vital to your case.
Call Our Medical Malpractice Lawyer in Minnesota for a Free Consultation
No one should suffer from a retained surgical instrument. At Wais, Vogelstein, Forman, Koch & Norman, LLC, our Minnesota medical malpractice lawyers know this and are dedicated to helping injured patients claim the compensation they deserve. We want to put that experience to work for you. Call us today or fill out our online form to schedule a free consultation.