Anesthesia Errors: A Common Form of Medical Malpractice | Scartelli Olszewski, P.C.
anesthesia errors | scartelli olszewski

Anesthesia Errors: A Common Form of Medical Malpractice

Scartelli Olszewski P.C.
Scartelli Olszewski P.C.

Anesthesia errors have been a medical issue since it became common practice in medicine to numb someone’s pain during treatment. Anesthesia is meant to keep people from feeling pain during basic procedures and keep them unconscious during many types of surgeries. If someone feels pain during these operations, they may move uncontrollably and cause the procedure to go wrong, or even cause undo stress on their organs, such as their heart, leading to organ failure.

These errors have significant consequences for anyone undergoing medical procedures and have remained a prevalent issue in medical care for years. According to studies conducted from 1998 to 2019 and 2020 to 2021, a total of 17,116 anesthetic errors were reported in the United States alone. While the studies found a decrease in the number of these occurrences over the years, there are still too many people being hurt by these errors. The impact anesthesia errors have on individuals is substantial and life-altering in many cases. This is not something that can be ignored. Medication errors in anesthesia practice have been estimated to range from 0.02% to 1.12% per case – or 1 in every 90 to 5000 anesthetics.

It’s important to understand the potential risks of anesthesia before entering surgery. If you or a loved one has suffered due to an anesthesia error, contact the medical malpractice attorneys at Scartelli Olszewski, P.C.

Types of Anesthesia Errors

Anesthesia errors refer to mistakes made during the administration of anesthesia. These errors can be caused by several different factors, but how they happen affects how much you can be harmed and how much you can seek in damages.

Each type of error can range from mild to severe. The most common types of anesthesia errors are:

  • Overdose: When too much anesthesia is administered to you, it can lead to agitation, confusion, dizziness, drowsiness, dysphoria, seizures, respiratory arrest, and/or even a coma.
  • Underdose: When not enough anesthesia is provided, you can move and react to treatments during surgery. This can be as little as increased breathing or even waking up during surgery.
  • Wrong Type: When the wrong type of anesthesia is given, it can lead to you only losing feeling in part of your body, or in more parts than you were supposed to.
  • Late Administration: The anesthetic was administered too late, resulting in pain during surgery as the anesthesia had yet to take effect.

Causes of Anesthesia Errors

Anesthesia errors can be caused by a variety of factors. These include human error and system failures within the healthcare setting. Some common causes of anesthesia errors include:

  • Wrong dosage
  • Improper administration, where the medical practitioner does not properly give a patient the anesthesia
  • Failure to monitor the patient’s poor response to anesthesia
  • Miscommunication between healthcare providers
  • Faulty anesthesia machines and monitoring devices

Consequences of Anesthesia Errors

Anesthesia errors can have serious consequences for patients. In extreme cases, you or a loved one may experience organ failure, paralysis, and even death in worse circumstances. Even if you or a loved one survives suffering an anesthesia error, you may suffer lifelong health issues and psychological trauma. These are all things that cannot be simply undone, and that you can claim compensation for.

You Can Seek Compensation For Medical Malpractice

Fortunately, there are ways to get compensation with the help of an attorney. It’s important to speak with an experienced medical malpractice attorney who can guide you through this process. Medicine may be an important industry, but it is a business industry nonetheless, and no business should get away with leaving a permanent mark on your life.
You can find the attorneys you need at Scarettli Olszewski, P.C. Contact us today for more information so we can help you get the compensation you deserve.