Many New Jersey residents have undergone surgical procedures. If you are scheduled for one, you expect it to go smoothly, but sadly, medical errors can happen. Surgery is one of the most common reasons for medical malpractice lawsuits.

Why are medical malpractice claims so common with surgery?

According to a report that looked at five years of medical malpractice claims from 2014 through 2018, it was found that surgery made up for 25% of all claims. Surgery errors can result in significant harm to patients. Surgery-related claims rank as the second most common in medical malpractice cases. The only claims that were higher were diagnosis-related, which comprise 32% of medical malpractice claims.

Additionally, 78% of claims had to do with the performance of the doctor during the surgical procedure, according to the report. The report mentioned that all phases of the process of the surgery, from making decisions through after the surgery itself, can result in claims.

What types of surgery most commonly result in claims?

General surgery accounts for the majority of instances of personal injury and medical malpractice claims at 22 percent. Orthopedic surgery was the second at 17% and neurosurgery came in third at 8 percent. Many of the patients who filed medical malpractice claims stated that their injuries were permanent. Some even resulted in the death of patients.

A lack of technical skill was the most common complaint in the claims at 39 percent. Meanwhile, 27% of patients stated that there was a miscommunication issue or a failure in judgment, resulting in their injuries. Some patients reported that a foreign object was left inside their body after the surgery and others reported that they had an unnecessary procedure, the wrong side of their body was operated on, or they experienced a delay in a procedure they needed.

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