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Patient is believed to have had a kidney removed in error

When an Illinois resident undergoes a surgical procedure, there is always a danger that something could go wrong. It's an unfortunate fact that some patients who have surgery, large or small, will have complications, and some even die, following the procedure. One issue that is not expected and should not happen is a surgical error. When there is a mistake due to a negligent surgeon, an error on the part of the medical staff, or for any other reason, the patient is transformed into a victim. The individual who has been harmed, or the family whose loved one died, need to understand his or her rights with regard to filing a medical malpractice lawsuit.

This knowledge is needed now after a surgeon in Massachusetts allegedly removed the wrong patient's kidney. An investigation is commencing. The medical authority in the state has said that it is taking the accusation seriously. A statement from the owner of the hospital seems to admit that something went wrong, saying that there was patient misidentification. It also notes that it was not a hospital employee who made the error. They say that the hospital staff adhered to all necessary safety requirements. Instead, they claim, the surgeon who scheduled the surgery at the hospital is responsible.

Mistakes like these are known as "never events." A study into these types of mistakes says that for every 112,000 surgeries, one such incident will occur. Statistically, each hospital will have this happen once within five to 10 years. However, approximately 200,000 people are believed to have died because of complications or other problems after surgery in the U.S., which could certainly be affected by increased rates of never events.

While the incident discussed above is still under investigation, the mere fact that the owner of the hospital has admitted to an error indicates that something went wrong. Sadly, these mistakes happen all too frequently and cause injury and death to patients. In some cases, it does not even come to light that a mistake was made. Those who believe that there was a medical mistake need to make certain that a full investigation takes place, evidence is gathered, and the scope of the error is fully known. Speaking to a legal professional about a medical malpractice lawsuit is the first step toward possibly recovering compensation for damages suffered.

Source: CNN, "Surgeon accused of removing kidney from wrong patient," Elizabeth Cohen, Aug. 10 1016

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