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Anesthesia errors are still an issue for patients

Most Pittsburgh residents will need to have surgery at least once in their life. Many times this surgery is performed using anesthesia. The use of anesthesia can be nerve-wracking for the patient especially because anesthesia errors can cause serious injuries.

Although anesthesia errors are rare they do occur and can be quite serious. One reason for an anesthesia error is that the medical staff ignores an alarm that is going off because of the patient’s condition. Deteriorating vital signs that are not caught early can cause a life-threatening situation for the patient.

Also, before a patient agrees to the use of anesthesia it is important that they know what the potential complications can be of using anesthesia. Patients also need to make sure their doctor knows their entire health history. There are conditions that a patient can have that could cause issues with the anesthesia. These common conditions include sleep apnea, allergies, seizures and anesthetic reaction.

When a medical provider fails to take a detailed health history of a patient these serious errors can occur. The failure to take appropriate pre-operative precautions can lead to a medical malpractice situation. Patients who have been the victim of an anesthesia error may want to contact a legal provider skilled in medical malpractice and to preserve their legal rights. The attorney can review the medical history and determine what went wrong to cause the unexpected injury or death. Compensation may be available for medical expenses, pain and suffering, loss of wages and other damages.

Source: Medical Daily, “Anesthesia-related deaths decline; more precautions needed to reduce injuries,” Shweta Iyer, Oct. 15, 2014