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How can surgical errors be prevented?


Going in to surgery can be a highly nerve-wracking experience for any Pennsylvania resident. There are often preparations that must be made beforehand, as well as the intensity of the surgery itself, followed by a recovery period which may be taxing. One of the biggest fears any surgical patient is likely to have is being the victim of a surgical error or other form of


medical malpractice


during surgery.

Many surgical errors are preventable, which is why doctors must follow the standard practices of their profession during every surgical procedure, and also why patients must follow all directions from their doctor. There are several "risk factors" for surgery that patients can consider before going under anesthesia. The first is the experience of the surgeon. Surgery is a very delicate, nuanced task and the doctor's experience may play a role in how well the surgeon adheres to guidelines and overcomes any unexpected complications during the procedure itself.

Another factor in preventing surgical mistakes is the time of day when surgery occurs. Just like members of any other profession, doctors are susceptible to fatigue and burnout. When surgeons are tired they may be prone to potentially injurious or even fatal mistakes. Having surgery scheduled at an appropriate time can be extremely beneficial to any patient, even those undergoing relatively minor procedures.

One thing that many patients don't realize is that surgical care doesn't necessarily stop at the conclusion of the actual surgery. There are often lengthy and complicated aftercare instructions that help ensure the health and well-being of a patient after surgery. There may be multiple medications, different steps the patient must take as far as rest and refraining from work and dietary considerations. If a doctor does not give the proper instructions or doesn't explain them fully to the patient, the surgeon may be accused of medical professional negligence later on.

Source: WebMD, "


Prevent errors during surgery


," accessed Oct. 3, 2014

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