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Top catastrophic medical mistakes in the United States

On Behalf of | Aug 8, 2023 | Hospital negligence

You were probably taught to respect doctors and other medical staff, as they are trained professional designed to help you get better. Unfortunately, many often makes mistakes that cause injury and even lives. In fact, medical mistakes are the third leading cause of death in the United States.

Below is a list of common medical errors that occur every day in the U.S.

1. Misdiagnosis

The human body is complex, as are the myriad of complications that can go wrong with it. Although misdiagnosing a medical issue seems like a simple mistake, it can have catastrophic results. A misdiagnosis means that the treatment and any medications a doctor prescribes are wrong, causing the initial medical complaint to remain without proper treatment.

2. Medication errors

This encompasses a broad range of mistakes, many with horrific results. Some common dangerous medication errors include the following:

  • Prescribing a medication that causes a patient to have an allergic reaction
  • Prescribing the wrong medication dosage
  • Prescribing the wrong medication
  • Administering the wrong medication due to an error in translation

Although these are simple mistakes, often, they cause serious injury or death to those taking them.

3. Surgical errors

Surgical errors can occur in many ways. A physician who fails to remove a cancer tumor that causes the cancer to spread is one example. A surgeon who amputates the wrong limb or organ is another. In some cases, surgical errors can include leaving surgical tools or materials inside a patient’s body that leads to infection.

4. Misread or false test results

When a doctor or healthcare professional examines an X-ray or lab test, you assume they have read it accurately and have made the right decision on treatment. However, this is not always the case. In some cases, results can be misread or even false which can lead to an inaccurate diagnosis.

5. Hospital related infections

Staph and other infections like MRSA are usually hospital-related infections. Sadly, they are due in part or whole from dirty hands from medical staff, improper cleaning procedures and cross-contamination.