People in Pennsylvania are becoming more aware of the risk of medical errors and their need to remain vigilant and active in their healthcare. When undergoing surgery, however, patients are at a natural disadvantage for this as they are under anesthesia and therefore not always able to know when surgical errors take place. This puts more responsibility on the entire operating room staff to help prevent serious injury or even death to patients.
Every day, many residents throughout Pennsylvania undergo surgical procedures for a variety of reasons. Every surgery, no matter how minor or severe, carries with it a certain level of risk. For too many patients, however, the risks involve preventable problems such as a surgeon mistake or actions of negligent operating room staff. Having a piece of surgical equipment left inside a patient is among the top forms of surgical errors that can cause serious injury to victims.
Residents in Pennsylvania know that they must be their own advocates for good healthcare in today’s world. Despite many respected, talented and honest medical professionals there are still a great many instances of medical malpractice. Some of these can be surgical errors and some can even be deliberate acts on the part of unethical professionals. All forms of medical errors together account for more deaths nationally than any cause other than cancer or heart disease.
Stories involving surgical errors are often sensationalized in the media to the point that residents of Pittsburgh don’t believe it could actually happen to them. Surely, their physician wouldn’t perform a wrong-site surgery and amputate a leg. Many surgical errors never hit the headlines, however. Patients suffer from a wide variety of post-op problems that can be prevented such as sponges or equipment left inside of the surgery site, dangerous drug combinations and uncontrollable bleeding.
When it comes to hospital safety, there are occasions known as "never events." This term is often applied to surgical procedures that are performed on the wrong patient or the wrong part of the body. The term comes from the rational thought that these tragic situations should never occur. In reality, however, doctors, nurses, administrators, and other hospital staff are not always as diligent as they should be when it comes to performing their jobs in Pennsylvania. As a result, these types of surgical errors do happen.