DC Anesthesia Malpractice Lawyer

Anesthesia is frequently required before surgeons perform medical procedures. When it is needed, anesthesia is generally administered by an anesthesiologist, often working in conjunction with a certified registered nurse anesthetist.

According to Medline Plus, there are different forms of anesthesia, including local anesthesia to numb one area of the body; regional anesthesia to block pain in a particular area of the body; and general anesthesia to render you unconscious. General anesthesia does not just put you deeply to sleep: it prevents the brain from responding to pain signals.

Anesthesia is essential in the effective practice of medicine, but there are significant risks. Mayo Clinic explains that anesthesiologists and CNRAs must have advanced training and are expected to provide professional treatment to patients undergoing procedures. If mistakes are made by these professionals, victims should consult with a DC anesthesia malpractice lawyer to determine options for recovering compensation.

Types of Anesthesia Errors

There are many different mistakes that can happen with the administration of anesthesia, which could result in a patient sustaining significant harm and even suffering fatal damage. Common examples of negligent care include:

  • Failure to identify existing airway problems in patients, such as sleep apnea.
  • Improper positioning of patients
  • Administering the wrong dosage of anesthesia or the wrong type of anesthesia drugs.
  • Failure to conduct a medical history to determine if a patient suffers from allergies to medications or has had adverse anesthesia reactions in the past.
  • Errors in the delivery of epidural or spinal anesthesia, especially during child birth.
  • Failure to monitor patients and/or to respond to critical changes in blood pressure or blood oxygen levels.
  • Discharging from the Post-Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU) before a patient is fully recovered from the anesthesia’s effects.
  • Problems with insertion of the breathing tube required during general anesthesia.

A patient may suffer many serious consequences when an error is made. Among other complications, Mayo Clinic warns that oxygen levels can drop dangerously and a patient may experience a seizure, stroke, brain damage, heart or organ failure, or death.

Patient’s Rights Following Improperly Administered Anesthesia

When anesthesia malpractice occurs, patients may be able to pursue a claim for compensation against the anesthesiologist as well as against the CNRA. If the anesthesia error resulted in a fatality, surviving family members of the patient may pursue a wrongful death claim

In some cases, claims may also be brought against the hospital or healthcare center where the anesthesia was administered. A DC anesthesia malpractice attorney can advise patients on all of the potential defendants who could be held accountable for losses and damages. 

When making a case for anesthesia malpractice in DC, the plaintiff will need to demonstrate the care provider failed to offer a reasonably professional standard of care, as compared with an anesthesiologist or other healthcare professional with a similar background and experience. The plaintiff must also show the anesthesia error had an adverse impact and resulted in damage to the patient’s health or prognosis.

Getting Help from a DC Anesthesia Malpractice Lawyer

An anesthesia malpractice lawyer in DC can assist patients and their families in obtaining medical records, determining if you can sue and who to make a claim against, finding expert witnesses, and obtaining other evidence to make a strong case for damages. Call today to learn more.