Negligent Surgery

The thought of undergoing a surgical procedure at hospital is enough to cause anyone a certain amount of stress. Usually that stress is alleviated by the knowledge that you will be well cared for and that the doctors and medical staff responsible for your care are both experienced and professional.

Mistakes can happen during any surgical procedure, and whilst a mistake does not necessarily mean that a medical negligence claim can be made, it increases the likelihood of one.

Certain factors must be considered before a claim for negligent surgery can be made, including the risks that you were or were not warned about before surgery; whether or not the surgery carried out was exactly that which you were expecting, and so on.

Our Medical Negligence team is experienced in handling compensation claims arising out of negligent surgery – whether that be the surgery itself or the consent process in the build-up to the surgery. We will be happy to talk to you about your experiences and we will give you our opinion as to your potential claim’s prospects of success. 

Below you will find a list of just some of the types of medical negligence claims arising out of surgery that our Medical Negligence team will be able to assist you with, and elsewhere on this page you will find links to a more detailed description of each of them and more besides:

  • Wrong site surgery – Despite the fact that there is usually a large arrow marked in black pen pointing the surgeon to the correct location for the impending surgery (although it has been known for the arrow to be in the wrong place!), sometimes the wrong area is operated upon (for example the wrong finger or the wrong foot). The Defendant doctor or Trust would be very hard pushed indeed to come up with a reasonable defence to a medical negligence claim arising out of such a mistake.
  • Bunion surgery – For example, chronic pain following bunion surgery due to the fact that the screw inserted into the foot is of an incorrect length, or has been put in at the wrong angle or in the wrong place.
  • Nerve damage following surgery – For example, damage caused to the femoral nerve during hysterectomy, kidney transplant, cystectomy (ie. removal of all or part of the bladder) or colorectal surgery. Such damage can lead to long term numbness in the patient’s legs as well as a loss of strength.

Our Medical Negligence team at Ince Metcalfes is experienced in handling claims for clients who have sustained injury as a result of negligent surgery. So, if you or someone you know has suffered such an injury then contact us today for a free, no obligation consultation.

For more information or to speak to one of our friendly team for your free initial consultation, please call 0117 239 8012 or complete our online enquiry form.

Negligent Surgery FAQs

  • What policies are in place to prevent retained swabs after surgery?

    The policies and procedures that each NHS Trust has in place will almost certainly include the following:

    • Written procedures to account for all swabs used during births and also during the stitching of perineums following tears or episiotomies.
    • Training of all staff including support, midwifery and obstetrics on the counting procedure in place.
    • Ensuring the midwives and obstetricians are aware of their responsibility for recording the swab count in the notes
    • Risk assessing all materials used and considering the use of x-ray detectable swabs.
    • Making sure that all incidents of retained swabs are reported appropriately

    If these procedures are not followed and swabs are left behind, the NHS trust will struggle to defend its position as the staff failed to follow the procedures in place. The NHS has paid out £3 million in compensation in 10 years (2000 to 2010) to women with retained swabs following the use of maternity services. The good news is that year on the year the number of incidents of this nature are reducing due to the implementation of these processes. 

    If you would like some more information about this article or if you would like to speak to someone in our medical negligence team, please call us on 0117 239 8012 and we’d be happy to help you.

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