People frequently underestimate the amount of risk involved in surgery. Surgical procedures have become such a common form of medical treatment that people assume it is generally safe. However, there are many major risks involved in even the most basic surgical procedure.
From the possibility of a patient having an adverse reaction to anesthesia to the risk of the surgeon making a dire mistake, there are many concerns that patients have to consider when determining whether an operation is the right treatment for their condition.
Side effects, failure rates and similar considerations can influence what you feel would be the best medical treatment. Unfortunately, a surgeon who very much wants to perform a procedure might withhold crucial information from a patient, including how often the procedure requires revisions or fails entirely. What can you do when you agreed to see surgery before understanding the risks involved?
You may have grounds to hold the doctor accountable
Surgery is one of many highly-invasive and high-risk procedures that require informed consent from the patient or their guardian. The patient has to understand what risks come with the procedure and make a decision based on having full information. Chemotherapy, opioid drug treatment and other experimental or invasive procedures also require informed consent.
Many doctors fail to secure truly informed consent. Instead, they just have their patient sign a document saying they understand the risks and want to undergo the procedure without ever exploring those risks with the patient.
Was your negative outcome a known concern?
Although you went into the procedure believing it had a nearly universal success rate, you have since learned that the side effects you experience are quite common. You simply were not aware of them before undergoing the operation.
When you realize after a medical procedure that your doctor wasn’t honest with you about the risks involved, you may feel strongly that you would have made a different choice given the proper information. You may potentially have grounds for a medical malpractice claim in that scenario.
Recognizing deviations from best practices when they occur, like failing to secure informed consent, could help you bring a medical malpractice claim against a doctor who didn’t act in your best interests.