Tampa Bay Anesthesia Error Lawyer
St. Petersburg Medical Malpractice Lawyers Helping Victims of Anesthesia Errors in Tampa Bay
The anesthesiologist plays a critical role in the operating room to administer anesthetics necessary for surgery and monitor the patient’s vital signs throughout the procedure. Others in the O.R., such as a nurse anesthetist, may also have duties regarding the administration of anesthesia for a successful operation. Anesthesia errors can cause the patient to suffer serious, even fatal consequences. The Tampa Bay anesthesia error lawyers at Masterson, Hoag & Smith can help you determine whether anesthesia mistakes caused you or a loved one to suffer harm during a medical procedure in Tampa Bay.
Understanding Anesthesia and Common Anesthesia Errors
Anesthesia may be local, regional or general, depending upon the procedure involved. Local and regional anesthesia both create a loss of sensation to the intended area, so the procedure can be performed without pain to the patient. General anesthesia, on the other hand, involves sedating the patient into a state of unconsciousness, so that the patient is unaware that the procedure is occurring and has no memory of the event. General anesthesia creates the most risks to a patient’s health and is the type most likely to cause permanent injury or death if conducted negligently or incorrectly.
General anesthesia involves the administration of three different classes of drugs:
- Analgesics to dull or prevent the sensation of pain during the procedure
- Relaxants to relax the muscles and allow greater access to the surgery site and insertion of a breathing tube
- Hypnotics to dim the patient’s consciousness so that he or she is unaware of the procedure as it takes place
Too much anesthesia can cause serious side effects ranging from nausea and seizures to permanent brain injury, heart stoppage or death. Too little anesthesia can cause the patient to experience pain or awareness during the operation. In one condition known as anesthesia awareness or intra-operative awareness, the patient is aware of the operation and experiencing excruciating pain, yet is paralyzed due to the drugs and unable to communicate with the doctors, nurses or anesthesiologist.
The duties of an anesthesiologist require this medical professional to deliver all drugs in the proper amount and to monitor the patient’s vital signs and machinery for a negative drug reaction or other complications. Sometimes, a patient’s anesthesia is lightened too soon in order to get the patient out of the OR to make room for the next scheduled surgery of the day. A patient’s well-being should never be compromised in the interest of doctor and hospital profits.
Anesthesiologists must carefully monitor the patient’s condition during surgery. Variances in vital signs may signal significant problems that can cause injury or even death. Medical negligence can occur and catastrophic injuries can result from an anesthesiologist’s failure to use proper care in monitoring the patient’s condition and failure to react properly when those changes are present.
Talk to Experienced and Successful St. Petersburg Medical Malpractice Lawyers after an Anesthesia Error in Tampa Bay
If you believe that you or a loved one were harmed by anesthesia errors committed during an operation or other Tampa Bay medical procedure, contact the St. Petersburg medical malpractice attorneys at Masterson, Hoag & Smith for a free case review.