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Surgeons have spent years training so they can provide their patients with the best level of care. However, that doesn’t mean that they are infallible. 

When a surgeon makes a mistake, there can be life-altering consequences for their patient. Minor complications can become fatal when your doctor is not performing to the best of their ability.

Patients are always briefed about the risks of surgeries before they are operated on. This prevents them from filing a lawsuit if a complication occurs during the procedure. However, if the patient suffers due to the surgeon’s negligence, then they can be held accountable.

Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath will assist you in collecting the damages you deserve. Call (561) 655-1990 to speak to a medical malpractice lawyer today about your options. Our free consultation will get you on the right track to justice.

Discover your legal options today.

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Our Recent Settlements



A Broward County jury awarded Denise and David Brown $35 million in a case against North Broward Hospital District, doing business at Broward General Hospital.


A Broward County jury awarded Denise and David Brown $35 million in a case against North Broward Hospital District, doing business at Broward General Hospital.


A Broward County jury awarded Denise and David Brown $35 million in a case against North Broward Hospital District, doing business at Broward General Hospital.

What is a surgical error?

Surgical errors, also called “never events” occur when a doctor does not perform surgery properly. The mistake could be a lapse in judgment, a lack of communication with the medical team, a misdiagnosis, or another form of negligence.

Surgical errors are mistakes that rest entirely on the doctor. If they show up impaired due to drugs or alcohol, are too exhausted to work, or are otherwise distracted and cannot perform to the best of their ability, they are committing a negligent act by performing the surgery.

Not all surgical errors are the same. Some may be minor, such as a slip of the scalpel causing an additional scar. This allows the victim to continue to live their life. However, others can be more significant, such as an accidental amputation. A victim who lost a limb due to a doctor’s mistake would have their entire life altered by their new physical form.

Complication vs. Malpractice

Many victims of surgical errors are written off as complications rather than victims of malpractice. All surgeries have the potential for side effects. But it can only be deemed a complication if the factors that could cause the victim’s suffering were outside of the doctor’s control.

For example, a patient who reacts poorly to anesthesia due to an allergy would not be able to hold the doctor liable for their reaction. However, if they had a reaction due to the doctor giving them too much anesthesia, the patient could file a surgical error lawsuit.

Why do surgical errors happen?

The most common cause of surgical error is doctor negligence. When doctors do not do their due diligence and follow proper protocols, people can lose their lives. That is the reason hospitals have strict practices in place that are to be followed before and during every surgery.

For example, there are closing procedures to ensure that no items are left inside of the patient when they are stitched up. If a doctor skips this check, they could cause the patient lifelong injuries due to a foreign object left in their body.

Our surgical error lawyers have worked with many victims who have suffered because their doctor didn’t even confirm their identity, ultimately performing the incorrect surgery on them.

Communication is a large factor in why surgical errors happen. If a medical team does not work together for a patient’s health, they can take contrary steps that will cause the patient harm in the long run.

Surgical error victims may also be the victims of medical misdiagnosis. If their chart has the wrong diagnosis included, the doctor may do the incorrect surgery on the wrong part of their body.

Common Types of Surgical Errors

Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath work with patients who have suffered a range of surgical errors. Most commonly, our patients have been injured due to:

  • Surgery on the wrong body part
  • Surgery on the wrong patient
  • A surgical material or foreign object left in the body after closing
  • Blood typing mistakes
  • Anesthesia errors
  • Improper use of robotic surgical tools
  • Birth injuries due to the obstetric errors

One mistake by a surgeon can affect the rest of a patient’s life. They can have ongoing complications due to the unnecessary procedure, suffer from mental illnesses, and may have limited enjoyment of their life going forward.

In critical cases, the surgical error can result in the patient’s death.

Damages You Can Recover

Surgical error lawsuits are a type of medical malpractice lawsuit. This means that you can collect economic damages to recover your lost finances while paying for your treatment. Since the care you received was subpar, you will be owed the amount of your medical bills and any other methods of treatment to ensure that you are not in debt for an incorrect operation.

Your attorney will also file for non-economic damages, which compensate you for your emotional suffering. If you have been unable to go back to work, live your life happily, or be with your partner due to a surgical error, you may be able to collect 3x your economic damages in the form of your emotional damages.


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