Marion A. Morawicz, Ltd.
Call for an Initial Consultation
312-580-0650

800 surgical tools left in patients since 2005

Illinois residents who seek medical care may be concerned to hear that there have been nearly 800 instances of surgical implements being left in patients since 2005. This information comes from the The Joint Commission, a nonprofit organization that seeks to ensure that hospitals employ and enforce practices that prevent these surgical errors from occurring. According to a spokesperson for the group, this issue is well-known and easily avoidable.

The current practice for preventing items from being left in patients involves counting all tools and performing cavity sweeps to ensure nothing is left behind. However, this process is subject to human error and 80 percent of the time when sponges are left in a patient, the staff believed they had accounted for everything. The Joint Commission stated that it is essential that a far more aggressive policy be put in place. They suggested that a nurse and tech count all items and then have this verified by a surgeon, and counts should be done before the procedure, before the patient is stitched up and at the end of the procedure.

Mistakes that lead to items being left in patients occur most frequently when a emergency surgery is required or when the type of procedure changed without warning. When a patient has a surgical implement left inside of them, they may experience physical harm and even death.

Surgical errors of any kind can prevent patients from recovering as rapidly as possible or prevent it entirely. A lawyer could explain their rights and let them know their options for legal recourse if someone has been harmed due to the negligence of a hospital or doctor.

Source: CBS News, "Nearly 800 surgical tools left in patients since 2005: Report", Ryan Jaslow, October 18, 2013

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Office Location

Marion A. Morawicz, Ltd.
20 S. Clark Street
Suite 410
Chicago, IL 60603

Phone: 312-580-0650
Fax: 312-853-0821
Map & Directions
Chicago Office Location

The Chicago Bar Association

Chicago Bar Association badge

AMERICAN ASSOCIATION for JUSTICE | Formerly the Association of Trial Lawyers of America (ATLA) | MEMBER -2013

American Association For Justice

FAQ Medical Malpractice

Frequently Asked Questions about Medical Malpractice

Q: What is medical malpractice?

A: Medical malpractice is negligence committed by a professional health care provider, such as a doctor, nurse, dentist, technician, hospital worker or hospital, whose treatment of a patient departs from a standard of care met by those with similar training and experience, resulting in harm to a patient...

Member ISBA Illinois Trial Lawyers Association