Unfortunately, physicians forgetting and leaving sponges and surgical instruments behind, in a patient’s body cavity (a.k.a. a “retained foreign body“) is an error that occurs more frequently than it should, and is truly indefensible, in terms of the standard of care and in a legal claim for injuries and harm that result.
Retained Foreign Bodies – Leaving sponges and Surgical Instruments behind during Surgery is medical negligence
Surgeons and hospitals have protocols and procedures explicitly in place to safeguard against this type of incident that results in a retained foreign body. In particular, hospitals and surgical groups have policies and procedures, which include requiring sponge and equipment counts at the conclusion of a procedure, prior to closing up a patient. Nonetheless, human error sometimes factors in causing a miscount. Sometimes a physician or his/her assistants miss a sponge or surgical instrument because of the distractions caused within the surgical field itself (blood, tissue, fat) – a blood-soaked sponge can be difficult to spot. However, this is precisely why hospitals, institutions and surgeons implement careful quality control procedures to ensure that these errors do not occur.
Injuries and Harm from Sponges and Surgical Instruments being Left Behind during An Operation
Naturally, having a foreign body left inside of your body is injurious and can lead to further complications, including further procedures, permanent wounds and scarring in order to remove the instrument, infection, absess, toxicity (systemic or localized infection), pain and discomfort.
Call an experienced morgantown WV medical malpractice lawyer for a free evaluation of your case
If you or a loved one have been injured as a result of a sponge or other instrument being left behind from a medical procedure or surgery, call the experienced medical malpractice lawyers at the Morgantown, WV law office of Adams Legal Group, PLLC today to discuss your case – (304)381-2166.