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2 surgical wound issues that may result from malpractice

On Behalf of | Jul 6, 2023 | Medical Malpractice

Surgery is an incredibly invasive process that involves physically altering the human body by cutting into it. Surgeons may remove cancerous tissue or transplant healthy organs. They can set compound fractures and place a pacemaker that could help keep someone alive. Ideally, they are able to achieve these specific medical goals without causing any lasting medical complications for the patient in their care.

It takes years of training and hands-on practice to be able to operate on someone safely and effectively. Unfortunately, risk of harm doesn’t end with the procedure itself. Those who have undergone an operation experience certain risks that will continue to be a concern for weeks afterward. For example, they could experience issues with their wound site. It’s important to understand that either of the following issues could be a strong indicator of poor practices on the part of the surgeon or their support staff.

An infection

One of the biggest concerns after surgery is the possibility that someone will develop a significant infection. Operating theaters are kept in sterile conditions, and surgeons must very carefully prepare themselves for the procedure to minimize the risk of infection. Cutting corners while preparing for the surgery and substandard care after the procedure could significantly increase a patient’s likelihood of a life-threatening infection. Infections can become systemic and may lead to hospitalization in some cases, even if the surgery was initially an outpatient procedure.

Wound dehiscence

Being able to heal after a surgery requires proper wound care. Unfortunately, sometimes patients experience a wound reopening, also known as wound separation or dehiscence. Especially when someone experiences complete dehiscence where the cut completely reopens, the potential for severe injury and infection exists. They will likely need to present for medical care immediately and will require more extensive aftercare, if not a revision procedure. Ultimately, they may also suffer worse tissue damage and scarring because their wound reopened.

Proper surgical practices greatly reduce the risk of both infection and an incision reopening after a procedure. Patients who have required extensive medical support because of incision-related complications after a surgery may have grounds for a malpractice lawsuit. Identifying warning signs of surgical malpractice may help people hold professionals accountable for their failures.