Major Surgical Mistakes Still Happen in US

Major Surgical Mistakes Still Happen in USMajor Surgical Mistakes Still Happen in US

Major errors during surgery are rare, but preventable mistakes still happen in hospitals throughout the United States, a new review finds. In about 1 in 100,000 surgeries, doctors make a “wrong site” error - for example, they operate on the wrong side of a person’s body, or sometimes even on the wrong person, the study found. And in 1 out of every 10,000 procedures, doctors leave something (such as a medical sponge) in the patient’s body, researchers found. Poor communication among medical staff is the root cause of many of these mistakes, the researchers said in their article, published online in the journal JAMA Surgery. In the review, researchers looked at 138 studies, published from 2004 to 2014, that reported at least one of three types of “never events” as experts call them: wrong-site surgery, leaving an item behind in a person during surgery, and surgical fires.