Rate of Anesthesia Errors in Outpatient Surgeries on the Rise

Rate of Anesthesia Errors in Outpatient Surgeries on the Rise

Medical malpractice can take many forms. It may occur as the result of failing to follow the proper protocol, making the wrong diagnosis – or failing to make a correct diagnosis. One of the more serious and potentially deadly areas of negligence may occur when an anesthesia error occurs. While not all instances where complications from anesthesia occur constitute medical malpractice, when a doctor or other health care professional acts negligently or recklessly and his or her incompetence harms a patient, he or she may be held responsible and required to pay damages.

Some of the complications that can arise from the improper administration of anesthesia include infections, allergic reactions, psychological trauma from waking during a procedure, heart attack, and even death.

A recent study found that while the number of claims paid for anesthesia malpractice have decreased over the last 10 years, the percentage of claims paid based on anesthesia errors that occurred during outpatient surgeries has surged as compared to inpatient surgeries. Roughly one-quarter of all payments were made for inpatient procedures, while 75% were made for outpatient operations.

Researchers believe that this could be a result of a few different factors. First, there has been a significant increase in the number of outpatient surgeries done. Procedure that may have been inpatient before are now releasing patients home. Additionally, the level of complexity in outpatient procedures has increased.

In both settings, the most common claim based on anesthesia malpractice was wrongful death.

For more information or if you believe that you or a loved one has been harmed as the result of anesthesia error, please contact the experienced San Diego medical malpractice lawyers at Bostwick & Peterson, LLP for an immediate consultation.


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