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Scalpel left in man's abdomen for four years after surgery

People in Arizona who have been victims of medical malpractice may be interested to learn that an Army veteran has filed a lawsuit against a veterans affairs hospital. In 2013, doctors at the VA hospital in West Haven, Connecticut, performed surgery on the man.

Almost four years after that surgery, the man returned to the hospital because he was suffering from dizziness and long-term abdominal pain. An X-ray revealed that the man had a scalpel in his abdomen. He had to have surgery a second time in order to have the instrument removed.

Both the man's lawyer and a U.S. Senator, Richard Blumenthal, spoke out against the error. Blumenthal said he had requested a full report from the VA and accountability to prevent such an accident from happening again. The man sued the hospital in U.S. District Court in the first part of January and requested unspecified compensatory damages.

Medical errors can be devastating to a person's health. They may lengthen a person's recovery time from an illness and could even prove to be fatal. A person who has suffered as a result of a medical error might want to talk to an attorney about whether the case constitutes medical malpractice. Other examples of surgical errors that might be considered medical malpractice include wrong-site surgery, giving a person the wrong dose of anesthesia, failing to treat complications that arise after surgery or even operating on the wrong person. A court looks at whether the medical professional was negligent to determine whether medical malpractice has occurred. If the patient did not receive a reasonable standard of care and suffered harm as a result of the error, it might be considered malpractice.

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