A missed, delayed, or inaccurate diagnosis could allow a health condition to develop into something more serious. For example, one in every 71 cases of cancer is misdiagnosed, so patients miss the window of time when treatment would have been most effective. Other ailments commonly misdiagnosed include heart attacks, strokes, and pulmonary problems.
Emergency room errors
In the high-stress, fast-paced environment of the ER, all sorts of medical mistakes can happen, such as administering the wrong medication, overlooking the patient’s medical history, and failing to address serious signs of distress.
You may have heard of cases where a sponge or a surgical tool has been left inside the body of a patient. This actually happens. Other examples of surgery errors include performing the wrong surgical procedure, injuring a nerve, operating in unsanitary conditions, and the like.
Anesthesia is only one part of a medical procedure, but there are plenty of ways it could go wrong. The incorrect anesthesia or anesthetic dosage could be administered, the anesthesia delivery could be delayed, the patient’s health history could react negatively with the anesthesia, and so on. The effects could be as devastating as stroke, coma, or death.
Birthing a child continues to be a highly delicate process today. It leaves room for some medical faults, from failing detect fetal distress to improper handling during delivery, and more. These can result in unfortunate conditions for the infant, such as brain damage, neurological disorders, and disabilities. The mother can also sustain injuries from these birthing errors.
A hospital or clinic itself may be held responsible for certain negligent actions. These can involve either the corporate body or the employees of the hospital. Examples of these include inadequate staffing, inexperienced employees, and failing to ensure hospital equipment are functioning properly.
Medical device errors
These may involve just about any medical tool such as defibrillators, implants, contraceptive devices, and stents. When a medical professional fails to sterilize, monitor, or properly fit the device, it may cause infections and other injuries, and may be considered negligence.
Medication / pharmaceutical errors
There are many ways a patient could be harmed through medicines and drugs. A doctor could prescribe the wrong medication, a pharmacist could mislabel the drug, a nurse could administer an incorrect dosage, and more.