Typical examples of wrong site surgery include:
- Operating on the wrong limb or eye
- Operating on the wrong internal organ
- Performing surgery on the wrong patient
Having surgery can be very worrying, as operations may carry a certain level of risk. That’s why you’d usually be told about recognised complications before having a procedure, and give your consent on the understanding that the surgeon would exercise appropriate skill and care.
So what can you do if the operation is carried out on the wrong body part by mistake?
Wrong site surgery will only be detected after the procedure has started, and can lead to:
This can in turn mean you:
Wrong site surgery almost always constitutes a breach of the duty of care that you’re owed as a patient, so if it has any of these consequences, you could claim compensation for surgical negligence.
If you have any questions about whether you can claim compensation for wrong site surgery, get in touch with our friendly team of expert Medical Negligence Solicitors for a free claims assessment. We can answer any questions you may have and will let you know how we can help you.
Between April 1st 2019 and March 31st 2020, 226 cases of wrong site surgery were reported by the NHS.
These were classed as Never Events - incidents that should never occur - and wrong site surgery accounted for nearly half of the Never Events reported overall during this period.
Provisional data for April 1st 2020 to February 28th 2021 indicates 325 Never Events in total, including 131 cases of wrong site surgery. Notably this is a provisional figure with some investigations ongoing.
Thankfully, these incidences are rare in the context of the total number of operations carried out by the NHS. But it’s clear that they’re continuing to happen every year, and having terrible consequences for those affected.
The reasons for surgery being performed in the wrong place can vary from patient to patient, but common causes include:
Each time a Never Event like this happens, the NHS Trust responsible is expected to carry out a thorough investigation to identify the cause. They should then take action to make sure the mistake isn’t repeated.
But the ongoing volume of wrong site surgery cases suggests that processes aren’t being adapted sufficiently and that some patients are suffering life-changing injuries as a consequence.
If you or a loved one has been affected by wrong site surgery, our Medical Negligence Solicitors can help you.
We’re happy to discuss your situation in a free claims assessment, and let you know if you have a good chance of claiming compensation and getting any specialist care and support you may need.
Over 10,000 NHS patients have been given faulty knee replacements, which could require a secondary surgery. The NexGen Zimmer Biomets are the second most used brand of knee implants in the UK.
Medical mistakes can and do occasionally happen, resulting in life-changing injuries for patients. For example, a surgeon may fail to remove surgical instruments, sponges, swabs or gauzes, which can have lasting consequences on a patient.
When we visit a GP or hospital, we expect a good level of care to be given. But unfortunately, the level of care we receive can sometimes fall below acceptable standards – this is called a breach of duty.
Fill in the form below to get in touch with one of our dedicated team members, or call our team today on: 0808 239 6043