Gaining the ability to repair broken bones internally was one of the most important advancements in the field of medicine. Without orthopedic surgery and other treatments, we would suffer from ongoing pain, deformity, amputation and death.
While all of us appreciate the skills orthopedic surgeons possess, we need to understand that these procedures are not without risk. As modern citizens, we know that all medical treatments and surgeries come with a certain amount of risk. What we might not expect is that one of these risks is orthopedic malpractice.
According to an article published by MedScape, orthopedics comes in at fourth place in the list of most sued medical specialties. The article also indicates that 46 percent of orthopedic malpractice accusations revolve around “improper performance of surgery.” Many of these claims are found to be erroneous, but the figure is still troubling.
The article indicates that postoperative care may also be risky for patients. Sixteen percent of orthopedic malpractice allegations center on the “improper management of surgical patient” after a procedure occurs. Doctor mistakes also occur in the diagnostic stage of orthopedic care at a rate of about 13 percent. Other areas in which an orthopedist may make mistakes include patient assessment, communication and the selection and management of treatment.
We urge you to engage your surgeon in a detailed conversation about any surgeries or treatment recommended to you. This can offer two valuable benefits: It ensures you are fully informed about the risks and rewards associated with surgery and it reminds the physician of his or her duty to provide you with the proper care.
We invite you to visit us online if you want to learn more about orthopedic malpractice. Our staff is always ready to assist Boston residents with their concerns about medical malpractice in all of its forms.