With any amount of luck, you will never need major surgery, but if you do and your situation allows you the opportunity to do some planning, there are certain steps that you can take to lower your risk of being a victim of medical malpractice and other mistakes. One of the simplest of these has to do with the timing of your procedure. Studies have shown that there are specific dates on the calendar as well as times of day that increase your chances for mistakes being made. Avoiding those times can help you to minimize your risk for complications, and even of death.
One of the most widely known of these time-related factors is that the month of July is the worst month of the year for undergoing surgery. There have been studies that have both proved and disproved this notion, though the reasoning behind it has remained the same: July 1st of every year is the “first day of work” for every recent medical school graduate, and that means that it is the day that will see the least experienced people helping to care for patients. Though some studies have confirmed that more complications follow July surgeries, as well as higher mortality rates, conflicting results suggest that senior doctors are paying closer attention to what their inexperienced colleagues do in July in order to prevent mistakes caused by from occurring.
Other timing-related risks have been shown to occur around public holidays when studies have shown that patients admitted on an emergency basis have a 49 percent greater chance of dying within a week of their admission than at any other time of year. Likewise, surgeries performed later in the day have higher rates of mistakes: studies have shown that a few hours’ difference in when a colonoscopy is done can determine whether all polyps are spotted, and there are more anesthesiology mistakes made in the late afternoon than in the earlier evening. These errors are attributed to fatigue on the part of the professionals, suggesting that if you want to avoid being the victim of medical malpractice, you should work with the goal of having your surgery scheduled as early in the day as possible.
If you have suffered as a result of a medical mistake and you suspect that it was caused by fatigue or inexperience on the part of a medical professional, we can help. Contact us today for a review of your situation by an experienced legal professional.