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What Can I Do if My Spouse Was Killed By Wrongly Administered Anesthesia?

 Posted on March 28, 2022 in Medical Malpractice

elmhurst medical malpractice lawyerUsing special medication, general anesthesia puts a patient into an unconscious state and allows them to avoid pain and physical movement. While Illinois anesthesiologists are carefully trained to administer anesthesia and monitor a patient’s heart rate and other vital signs during treatment, even relatively minor surgeries can be dangerous when they involve the use of general anesthesia. Most of the time, general anesthesia is used safely, even for high-risk populations; but when an anesthesiologist acts negligently or carelessly, patients can suffer serious injury and even wrongful death.

Are Certain Patients at Great Risk of Anesthesia Complications? 

Not every injury and death that occurs during the use of general anesthesia can be attributed to medical malpractice. Certain health conditions, habits, and medical histories can place patients at higher risk of adverse events during anesthesia, including: 

  • Obesity

  • High blood pressure

  • Clogged arteries

  • Sleep apnea

  • Smoking

  • Seizures

  • Stroke

  • Use of medications that act as blood-thinners

  • Drug allergies 

Anesthesiologists must work closely with a patient’s medical team to ensure they have a comprehensive understanding of the patient’s health history and current health status.

Common Anesthesia Errors and Complications

While an anesthesiologist must be fully aware of a patient’s health before administering anesthesia, complications and mistakes during surgery can also pose serious risks. These include, but are not limited to: 

  • Giving too much or too little anesthesia

  • Failing to monitor a patient’s vital signs

  • Failing to monitor how much anesthesia is in a patient’s system

  • Allowing a patient to be sedated for too long

  • Failing to recognize or respond to complications or patient distress

  • Equipment issues 

  • Failing to give a patient appropriate instructions for post-surgical care 

When a patient is subject to any of these errors, they are at heightened risk for serious injuries, including brain damage, coma, heart attack, stroke, and death. Sometimes wrongly administered anesthesia can cause a patient to be alert during a surgery but unable to communicate with the doctors. While alert patients usually do not experience pain, the sensation can be extremely traumatizing.

Meet with a Cook County Medical Malpractice Lawyer

Initiating a lawsuit may be the last thing you want to do after losing a loved one to, or suffering from, medical malpractice. At Schwartz Injury Law, our Cook County anesthesia injuries lawyers have worked with clients in very sensitive cases to pursue justice while keeping the stress and difficulties of a lawsuit off of our clients’ shoulders. While a successful lawsuit cannot bring back a loved one, it may give their family desperately needed financial relief and help to prevent such things from happening in the future. Call our offices today at 708-888-2160 to learn more about how we may be able to help.


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