Infections After Surgery May Give Rise to a Medical Malpractice Claim

medical malpractice lawyer New York CityUnder certain circumstances, a patient may be required to undergo a surgical procedure. Upon completion of a surgical procedure, the wound may become infected as a result of medical negligence, which may give rise to a medical malpractice claim.  A surgical infection is extremely serious and can result in fatal consequences if left untreated.  Commonly, surgical infections will appear within thirty days of a procedure. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDCP), reported that approximately 35 percent of infections are related to a hospital procedure. In 2011, there were over 75,000 deaths as a result of a hospital procedure infection.

In general, most hospital procedure infections occur as a result the following:

  • Clinicians failing to properly sterilize their hands in accordance with industry standards;
  • Failing to adequately sterilize surgical instruments;
  • Leaving a surgical tool or another foreign object inside the patient’s body; and
  • Improper sterilization of an operating facility, among others.

Post-surgical infections can be very serious and may result in the following when left untreated:

  • Severe scarring;
  • Disfigurement;
  • Nerve, muscle, or tissue damage;
  • Becoming septic; and
  • Death.

Common warning signs of an infection at the surgical wound site include:

  • A change in skin color;
  • A change in skin texture;
  • Swelling in a localized area;
  • Redness in a particular area;
  • Pus or drainage from the skin;
  • Exposed bone or muscle;
  • An item protruding from the skin;
  • The skin feels cool or warm to the touch; and
  • Tenderness of the skin.

Under New York State law, a clinician must adhere to the acceptable standard of care that a reasonably prudent clinician under similar circumstances would have. However, at times, a clinician may make a mistake by leaving a surgical instrument in a patient’s abdomen, which may result in the patient getting a surgical infection.  In this instance, a patient that suffers injuries may be entitled to recover compensation as a result of the clinician’s negligence. In addition, if a clinician fails to timely diagnose and treat a post-surgical infection, this may also give rise to a claim of action.

If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of a post-surgical infection, it is important to contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney that will evaluate your case and seek maximum compensation from those responsible for your injuries. Seeking the assistance of an experienced lawyer is vital in protecting your rights. Contact the dedicated, experienced attorneys at Levine & Slavit, PLLC for the representation you deserve.  Call (888) LAW-8088.

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