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How Common Are Medical Errors?

 Posted on November 14,2023 in Uncategorized

Lake Zurich Medical Malpractice AttorneyMedical errors are a serious concern in healthcare. According to national statistics, medical errors result in costs of about $20 billion every year. Although medical errors cover a wide range of issues, certain types of medical errors occur more frequently than others. The following is a brief overview of those errors. Contact an Illinois medical malpractice lawyer for more detailed information about your situation.


Misdiagnosis is thought to be the most prevalent type of medical error that results in medical malpractice lawsuits. When a medical provider fails to diagnose a patient’s medical issue accurately or fails to account for the patient’s symptoms, this is considered a misdiagnosis.

When a doctor makes a misdiagnosis, this can delay the patient receiving the necessary treatment for their condition, or the patient may be given the wrong treatment. Both situations can end up causing the patient’s medical condition to progress, often with devastating consequences.

Medication Errors

Another frequent cause of medical malpractice lawsuits is medication errors. There are a number of medication errors that can have potentially fatal consequences, including:

  • Giving the patient the wrong dosage of medication.

  • Giving the patient the wrong medication.

  • Failing to monitor how the patient responds to the medication.

Surgical Errors

Surgical errors are particularly alarming due to their potential for catastrophic consequences. Some of the most common include:

  • Leaving surgical instruments or foreign objects inside the patient.

  • Performing the surgery on the wrong site (i.e., operating on the patient’s left arm when it was supposed to be their right arm).

  • Performing the wrong surgical procedure.

Many surgical errors result from a lack of proper verification, miscommunication, or fatigue.

Infection Control Failures

Infection control is a fundamental aspect of healthcare, yet many patients suffer the consequences of medical negligence and lapses in this area. Healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) can occur when healthcare facilities fail to maintain proper hygiene and sanitation or when healthcare providers do not follow stringent infection control procedures. Infection control errors can lead to serious illnesses, prolonged hospital stays, and even death, especially for patients with weakened immune systems.

Are Medical Errors Preventable?

According to national statistics, more than 400,000 hospitalized patients suffer some type of preventable injury or illness every year. Approximately 100,000 of those patients die from these incidents.

The most common hospital medical malpractice claims are a result of surgical errors. The most common outpatient medical malpractice claims result from late or missed diagnoses.

One significant cause of medical errors is the reduction in nursing staff many hospitals implement in order to decrease their overhead. Many facilities have an RN staff that is below increased mortality target levels.  

Contact a Lake County, IL Personal Injury Attorney for Legal Help

If you or a loved one has been a victim of a medical error, call Salvi Law, Inc. at 847-721-2499 to schedule a free consultation with one of our dedicated Lake Zurich, IL medical malpractice lawyers and find out what legal recourse you may have.

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