One of the more serious forms of medical negligence includes anesthesia malpractice. Anesthesia malpractice occurs when a doctor, nurse, or other health care provider fails to properly administer these powerful drugs. Providing too much anesthesia may cause serious complications, such as heart attack, stroke and in the worst case, death. Administering too little may result in a patient waking up during a procedure, causing significant psychological trauma. Other potential injuries may include brain injury, nerve damage, coma and paralysis.
A recent report reviewed the incidence of anesthesia malpractice and determined that the number of claims has significantly decreased over the last 10 years. However, the leading type of injury that resulted in a negligence claim stemmed from a wrongful death. Women represented slightly more than half of the cases (54% of claims), and the most common age of patients was from 40-59 years old.
The report revealed a shift toward more claims being filed as the result of outpatient, rather than inpatient, surgeries. A simple explanation for this may be that the number of outpatient procedures has significantly increased in proportion to inpatient procedures, leading to an increased chance that when errors do occur, they occur during outpatient operations. Further, outpatient operations are increasingly complex.
In either situation, anesthesia errors have the potential for causing serious, and lifelong injuries. If you or a loved one has suffered a complication as the result of an anesthesia error it is critical you contact an experienced Los Angles anesthesia error lawyer immediately to determine your next steps.
For more information, please contact the dedicated Los Angeles medical malpractice lawyers at Bostwick & Peterson LLP for an immediate consultation.