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More surgical errors occur with rude or disrespectful doctors

During an operation in Illinois or elsewhere around the country, a surgeon must often make decisions that affect a patient's life. Unfortunately, mistakes can occur during surgery which could result in severe injury or death. Mistakes may occur because a doctor is distracted or debilitated in some way. However, a recent study suggests that a doctor's attitude and personality can affect the number of his or her surgical errors.

The study evaluated the correlation between reports of unprofessional behaviors and surgical outcomes at hospitals throughout the United States. Data showed that surgeons with a higher level of complaints also had 14 percent more patients experience complications after surgery. The study, conducted by a well-known university medical center, included such complications as sepsis, heart problems and stroke in their definition.

Authors of the study contend that, if physicians are rude to patients, they will likely also be disrespectful to other medical staff. This behavior could subsequently have a negative impact on patient care. If a surgeon has treated support medical personnel poorly in the past, someone may be hesitant to continue offering suggestions or opinions. A patient may not get optimal care if all those involved are not fully working together.

Researchers acknowledge that a 14 percent difference in adverse outcomes may not sound significant. However, with 27 million surgeries performed each year, any improvements made in teamwork among medical personnel can potentially reduce errors in many procedures. Experts believe that, by monitoring and correcting disrespectful behavior among surgeons, patient care could be improved, and the number of surgical errors would decrease.

If an Illinois resident has died or suffered serious injury as a result of surgical errors, family members often pursue a wrongful death or personal injury lawsuit. Hospital and medical costs, funeral expenses, lost wages or damages for mental anguish may be included in a claim. An experienced medical malpractice attorney can help families through the litigation process to seek compensation for their losses.

Source:, "Rude, disrespectful surgeons may also be more error-prone: Study", Feb. 15, 2017

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