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When to schedule a surgery

Illinois residents who are planning to schedule a medical procedure may wonder if there is a best or worst time to have a surgery. The time and date has some connection to the frequency of medical mistakes.

It is commonly known that graduating medical students typically begin their first day of work on July 1. One study showed a higher mortality rate in July, but another actually revealed that rates of surgical errors in July are no higher than other months, possibly because recent graduates are being supervised by senior residents. Another study showed that those admitted to hospitals on legal holidays are 48 percent more likely to die within one week than those admitted on ordinary days.

Time of day may also be relevant when scheduling a procedure. Research suggests that gastroenterologists are more likely to find polyps earlier in the day. Doctors were more likely to perform unplanned C-Sections on women in labor between 3:00 and 9:00 p.m. on Fridays than those admitted at other times. Another study showed that patients were more likely to suffer from complications related to anesthetisa later in the day than during surgeries scheduled at 9:00 a.m. The implication of this research is that, throughout the day, doctors become more likely to make mistakes as they become tired.

When doctors make mistakes that could have been avoided through careful medical treatment, they may be liable to their patients for injuries. A licensed personal injury attorney may be able to help injured patients obtain compensation for their medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering.

Source: The Atlantic, "The Worst Time to Have Surgery", James Hamblin, June 19, 2013

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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...

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