Alpharetta Objects Left in Body Lawyer

While all surgical procedures have their risks, one of the more potentially harmful risks is for the surgical team to leave a foreign object behind in your body. Although initially thought to be isolated incidents, reports of retained surgical items (RSIs) are becoming more commonplace. Due to the injuries that often result from RSIs, you need to consult an Alpharetta objects left in body lawyer for advice. A team of client-centered attorneys could work with you and place your needs first, especially when a medical professional fails to prevent such an injury from happening.

Although many safeguards and protocols in surgeries exist that are supposed to keep surgical teams from leaving objects behind in the bodies of patients, medical providers sometimes fail to abide by those procedures. When this occurs, patients often sustain severe injuries that plague them for years and necessitate further surgical procedures. An experienced surgical error lawyer may be able to assist you in seeking legal recourse if you are in this situation.

Retained Surgical Items During Surgery

Despite the existence of standardized precautions, surgical teams may inadvertently leave behind various objects in the bodies of patients during surgical procedures. These objects may include:

  • Surgical sponges, cotton, and gauze;
  • Needles and clips;
  • Scalpel blades; and
  • Scissors.

Any of these items could cause severe issues for patients, some within hours of surgery. In some cases, however, patients may go years without realizing the source of their pain and medical problems. When this situation occurs, patients may need further surgical procedures to determine whether they have RSIs and to remove them safely.

RSIs have the potential to create life-threatening medical issues, including infections, damages to nerves and tissues, and damages to organs and blood vessels. Diagnostic procedures, such as x-rays and MRIs, may be necessary to discover the existence of RSIs. As a medical malpractice action may arise from an RSI, individuals may wish to consult an objects left in body lawyer in Alpharetta for legal counsel and guidance. Attorneys who could work with an in-house medical profession could find a victim’s case bolstered in court by experienced medical opinion.

What Safety Protocols are Used to Prevent Medical Providers from Leaving Objects in Body?

While surgeons and their medical teams might leave behind various objects in the bodies of patients following surgery, one of the most common RSIs is surgical sponges. However, protocols exist to avoid leaving these items in a patient.

For instance, surgical nurses and assistants are supposed to perform a count of all surgical instruments and sponges before making a surgical incision and again before closing an incision. If they discover that an object is missing, this protocol dictates that they take immediate action to recover and remove the object while the patient is still in the operating room. Following this protocol could save patients from later having to go through further surgeries or experiencing adverse medical reactions to the foreign object.

Another technique for avoiding RSIs is using surgical sponges containing tiny radiofrequency detection chips. When a surgical team discovers that they are unable to account for a sponge, they then could use technology to detect whether the sponge remains in the patient. If patients suffer injuries in this situation, an objects left in body attorney in Alpharetta may be able to help. Lawyers could use cutting-edge technology of their own to demonstrate how a medical professional made a mistake and why a victim is entitled to compensation.

What are the Time Limits for Filing Medical Malpractice and RSI Lawsuits?

Although O.C.G.A. § 9-3-71 generally states that injury victims must file their medical malpractice claims within two years of the malpractice incident, an exception exists for RSIs. Under O.C.G.A. § 9-3-72, when the malpractice arises from a foreign object left in the body of a patient, the regular statute of limitations does not apply. Instead, injury victims have one year from the date that they discovered the presence of the foreign object in which to file their claims.

Excluded Devices and the Statute of Limitations

This code section limits explicitly the items that qualify as foreign objects. More specifically, foreign objects do not include chemical compounds, fixation devices, and prosthetic aids or devices.

Consult an Alpharetta Objects Left in Body Attorney for Advice

Retained surgical items could have catastrophic consequences for patients, some of which may be fatal. If you suffered injuries in this manner, or if a loved one has died because of a retained object, you may have options for legal recourse. An Alpharetta objects left in body lawyer could provide you with the information that you need to make decisions in this challenging situation.

Working with legal counsel could benefit you and allow you to understand what options are available to you. Taking this step also may let you get compensation for your injuries. Call today to speak directly to an attorney who takes calls after hours and is willing to give you a free case review.