In order to ensure a patient’s recovery and avoid complications after a surgical procedure, doctors must provide adequate post-operative care. Post-operative care may include things like diagnostic imaging, monitoring of vitals, prescribing medication, and informing the patient about what types of activities should be avoided after the procedure. When a surgeon, nurse, or other hospital staff member is negligent in the treatment and monitoring of a post-operative patient, serious injury can result.
Post-operative negligence may result in the following consequences:
- Injury caused by failure to warn. A patient’s body may not be able to perform the same tasks it once did before surgery. Doctors must warn their patients of what activities they can and cannot do in order to prevent further injury.
- Blood clots. Blood clots are a common consequence of negligent post-operative care. Blood clots may form in the legs due to immobility during surgery and recovery. Without adequate preventative measures, such as compression garments, mild exercise, or prescription medication, blood clots may form in the legs and travel up to the heart, lungs, or brain, which can be fatal.
- Infection. A leading result of negligent post-operative care, infection can occur if the patient’s environment isn’t properly sterilized or if their wounds are not properly treated, dressed, and monitored regularly. Doctors must also run periodic tests to look for signs of infection, such as a decreased white blood cell count or an increase in temperature. Even in a hospital, an infection can be life threatening.
Hospital-Acquired Infection: MRSA
Methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus infection (MRSA) is a type of staph infection with an alarming growth in prevalence. In fact, the number of MRSA infections doubled between 1999 and 2005. This particular infection is highly problematic because it is resistant to most of the antibiotics used to treat staph infections. When the infection doesn’t respond to these drugs, doctors may assume that a staph infection isn’t to blame, and by then it may be too late to treat the patient effectively. If left untreated for long enough, MRSA can lead to serious complications including pneumonia, permanent injury, or death.
If you have contracted MRSA or another injury due to inadequate post-operative care, you may have grounds for a medical malpractice lawsuit. Consult with a Tampa medical malpractice lawyer at The Florida Law Group to see if you have a case. We have obtained millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for injured people and are backed by more than a century of experience. Call today to learn more about how we can help you.