Failure to Monitor & Medical Malpractice in Atlanta
Why is Monitoring During and After Surgery Important?
Is surgery safe? In the hands of a competent and experienced surgeon who exercises necessary care, technical performance of the surgery is safe. But, safety before, during and after surgery requires monitoring of the patient and quick action when a problem may be developing.
Statute of Limitations for a Claim of Inadequate Monitoring in Georgia
There are limits for filing a medical malpractice lawsuit in Georgia. In Georgia, generally, the statute of limitations for the filing of a medical malpractice lawsuit is two years from the date of the injuries or death. There is a different statute of limitation that applies to claims by minors. There are exceptions to the statutory deadlines, and applying the statutes to the particular facts is not always easy. Thus, this website does NOT provide any legal advice.
For any person who is contemplating the possibility of a medical malpractice lawsuit, the safest thing to do is to contact a qualified attorney as soon as possible after the event. There are also other reasons to do so. A medical malpractice claim is complicated, and a full investigation of the facts and circumstances must be performed before filing. This can take time which may not be available when the statutory deadline is close to expiration. In addition, with the passage of time, memories fade, witnesses may move, and evidence may be lost.
Proper monitoring requires that the physician, and especially the anesthesiologist, be familiar with your full medical history. A careful physician should be aware that certain medical conditions, including a history of seizures, obesity, high blood pressure, obstructive sleep apnea and a history of adverse reaction to anesthesia are risk factors for complications during surgery. Diabetes, smoking, alcohol use, use of aspirin or herbs that can create thinning of the blood, drug allergies, and any history of lung, kidney, or heart issues are additional risk factors for surgery/anesthesia complications. Additional or more stringent monitoring may be required when the patient presents with factors that increase the risk of either anesthesia or surgery.
Monitoring During Anesthesia in Atlanta
Monitoring during anesthesia is standard of care. Because of the changes in patient status during anesthesia, qualified anesthesia care providers should be continuously present to monitor the patient and provide ongoing care.
The medicines used for anesthesia can affect the central nervous system that controls important organs such as the heart and lungs. Anesthesia can suppress breathing, heartbeat, blood pressure, and other body functions. As a result, standard monitoring during surgery requires heart rate and rhythm monitoring, blood pressure monitoring and oxygen saturation monitoring.
Proper Positioning Before Surgery and Positional Monitoring During Surgery
A patient who is improperly positioned or who remains in a particular position for too long during surgery may suffer injury. This is known as a positioning injury.
It is essential to select a surgical position that minimizes injury. When positioning that poses a risk of harm must be used, the standard of care requires close monitoring and may also require supplemental devices such as padding or straps to decrease the risk. Most often, positioning injuries are predictable and preventable and result from a failure to position correctly or to monitor carefully.
To determine whether a surgical position poses an increased risk of harm, the surgeon and the anesthesiologist must consider the height, weight and age of the patient, particularly when the patient will be placed in a position where the feet are elevated higher than the head, such as the Trendelenburg position. And of course, the expected duration of the surgery is also an important consideration. The longer the surgery, the greater the risk of harm from positioning. When a surgery takes significantly longer than expected, it's time to be even more vigilant in monitoring.
Once proper positioning occurs, the medical team members (including surgeon, anesthesiologist or CRNA, and operating room nurse) must monitor the patient throughout the surgery. At the first sign of any potential injury caused by positioning, it's time for the team members to call a time out, and to safely put a pause on the surgery while the patient is re-positioned. The anesthesiologist has ultimate authority in the OR (operating room) to halt a surgery as necessary in order to re-position the patient and keep the patient safe. This is why anesthesiologists are called, "head of the bed."
Contact an Atlanta Failure to Monitor Attorney at Grant Law Office
The husband and wife team of Wayne Grant and Kimberly W. Grant has many years of experience. Wayne Grant is Board-Certified in Medical Malpractice Law by the American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys (ABPLA). Wayne Grant is in the top 5% of attorneys in Georgia, as chosen by his peers and through independent research conducted by the publication, Super Lawyers. Kimberly W. Grant is licensed to practice law in both North Carolina and Georgia. She has extensive medical knowledge and detective-like skill in finding the evidence that wins cases. Please contact us if you have questions: (404) 995-3955 and Toll Free (866) 249-5513.