Five Common Abdominal Surgical Accidents

Many patients around the world undergo surgical operation to treat various conditions like bowel dysfunction, these individuals put their trust fully on doctors who operate on them. However, just like any other medical procedure, surgery has a certain level of risk that can leave patients with devastating injuries, permanent complications or even death. This is why you should always consult with a lawyer if you suspect to be a victim of abdominal surgical accident. Some of the common mistakes that doctors make when doing operation include: 

I. Leaving an instrument or sponge inside the patient’s body 

This problem is scientifically referred to as ‘Retained surgical item’, some of the victims encounter painful experiences such as losing parts of their intestines, whereas others don’t even survive. Usually, in such cases the patient’s stomach would begin to swell uncontrollably and if left for too long their bowel system may shut down completely. Even after the tool is discovered and removed from one’s body, they would still require around 3 weeks of hospitalization to recover fully. 

Since most surgeries involve the use of surgical instruments like scalpels, pads and clamps, they must be routinely counted before and after every procedure to ensure nothing is missing. Failure to do so can result in an equipment being left behind in the person’s body after surgery is done. 

II. Poor stitching after operation 

After every operation, the surgeon is required to properly stitch the open parts so as to foster healing. However, if stitching is not done correctly then this can cause the bowel to leak. Passing stool may also be a challenge since the person would exert undue pressure on the bowel, and this can cause it to rapture all over again. Additionally, if the material used for stitching is not strong enough it can easily break even without any possible cause. 

III. Accidental perforation 

This occurs when the surgeon leaves behind holes on the gastrointestinal tract after operation is completed, it may cause bacteria living inside the bowel to leak into the stomach hence causing widespread infection which can be life threatening. Moreover, bacterial conditions like peritonitis and sepsis which are caused by a punctured bowel can affect the patient’s internal organs such as the liver, lungs and kidneys. Something that may result in death if not promptly and accurately diagnosed and treated. 

IV. Technical mistakes 

This involves errors such as using the wrong equipment for surgery, or cutting something that shouldn’t be touched in the first place. If these errors are recognized early at the time of operation, there’s no cause to worry as the surgeon can quickly fix the condition right away. However, if not detected it can lead to painful complications such as stool leaking into the abdomen and becoming septic. 

V. Surgical negligence 

Sometimes, the surgeon can excessively cut vital organs like the colon or bladder leading to intense bleeding. This can cause other complications that were not anticipated before, such as the patient going into a coma due to excessive loss of blood. Patients undergoing abdominal surgery should be monitored closely during the operation, so that surgical negligence by a careless practitioner doesn’t happen.

Post Author: Kathleen Relyea

Kathleen Relyea