It would be impossible to carry out any invasive surgery without using some form of anaesthetic. The pain would be excruciating. To reduce or prevent pain during the procedure all major surgical procedures are carried out under anaesthetic that is administered by a trained anaesthetist or anaesthesiologist.
An anaesthesiologist is a qualified doctor who specialises in anaesthesiology – a medical specialty that focuses on giving, monitoring and managing medications that numb the whole body or a specific area of the body. These highly trained medical professionals are always present in the operation theatre and work closely with the main surgeon and the surgery team. They are in fact the second most important person in the operating theatre after the surgeon.
Before the surgery, the anaesthesiologist who will be administering your anaesthetic will discuss the operation with you and ask about your medical history, in particular if you have special anaesthetic problems. In the operating theatre, the anaesthesiologist is the one who is responsible for administering the anaesthetic either as an injection or through inhaled gases. Throughout the procedure they monitor your vital signal vigilantly and inform the surgeon if they notice anything that is out of the ordinary.
Types Of Anaesthesia
The anaesthesiologist is the one who decides on the type of anaesthetic to be administered. This usually depends on the procedure that the patient is scheduled to undergo.
There are three types of Anaesthesia:
General Anaesthesia –
General anaesthesia is administered via the patient’s circulatory system by a combination of injected drugs and inhaled gas. The anaesthetic works foremost on the brain and the bodies central nervous system to render the patient unconscious and also unaware. Following the initial injection, anaesthesia is maintained intravenously with gas and additional drugs.
Local Anaesthesia –
Local anaesthesia is administered to temporarily reduce or prevent painful sensations in a specific region of the body. For example if the patient is undergoing surgery of the foot, a local anaesthetic is administered by an injection to the foot area so only that area is affected. The patient remains conscious during the procedure.
Regional Anaesthesia –
Regional anaesthesia is used when a larger region of the body is required to be numbed or if the local anaesthetic injection is unable to penetrate far into enough to the site. In this case, the local anaesthetic injection is administered around the major nerves and possibly the spinal cord. This blocks pain from a bigger but still limited area of the body.
Local anaesthesia carries the lowest risk, and general anaesthesia the highest.
What Can Go Wrong With Anaesthesia
The entire process of putting a patient under anaesthetic, from the administration of the numbing medication to keeping the patient safe throughout the surgery and after, is highly complex and risky. Anaesthetists undergo extensive training to gain the crucial skills required. Not many people realise that the training to become an anaesthetist is as rigorous as that of the surgeon carrying out the operation.
Unfortunately, despite taking all the care and precautions, mistakes and negligence can and do happen at any main stage of anaesthetic administration. Sometimes this can have tragic consequences.
Typical Mistakes That Occur With Anaesthesics
Negligent Anaesthesia Preparation –
Proper preparation is critical to the successful application of an anaesthetic. Failure to seek informed consent, check the patient’s medical records or administer the correct type or dose of anaesthetic are the most common examples of negligent anaesthesia preparation. Too much or the wrong type of anaesthetic can cause serious damage to vital organs, cause anaesthetic awareness and even lead to death in some cases.
Failure To Monitor Or Respond To Crucial Indicators –
Monitoring the patient for any signs of distress while they are under the influence of the anaesthetic is crucial. Failure to notice or respond to any sign of distress can have serious and often fatal consequences.
Claiming Anaesthetic Negligence Compensation
All medical professionals, including anaesthetists, have a duty of care towards their patients. Anaesthetic negligence is tantamount to violating this legal clause, holding the individual liable for your injuries.
The repercussions of such negligence are almost always severe and can range from organ failure and nerve injuries to paralysis, stroke and brain damage. In any of these cases, not only does the patient’s quality of life suffer drastically but there are also serious financial implications. Firstly, there are the ongoing expenses towards doctor’s fees, prescription medications, treatments, physiotherapy and other assorted hospital bills. Then there is the loss of income and perks from being unable to go to work, which could be long term or even permanent depending on the type and extent of injuries.
If you think your injuries or your loved one’s injuries are a direct result of anaesthetic negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for your pain, suffering and financial losses.
Anaesthetic Negligence Compensation Claims Solicitors
Filing an anaesthetic negligence compensation claim on your own can be extremely challenging. You will have to deal with all sorts of complicated legalities that can stress you out and slow down your recovery.
Experienced personal injury solicitors on the other are thoroughly conversant with personal injury law. Our solicitors know exactly how to research precedents and build strong cases based on the information our clients provide them with. They also know medical experts who they can approach to provide medical advice and expert testimony so you don’t need to worry on that score either.
Last but certainly not least, you don’t have to worry about where to get the money from to pay the solicitor’s fees. If you have a strong case, our experienced solicitors will help you get the compensation due to you on a Conditional Fee basis. Also known as No Win No Fee, this states that you only pay an agreed fee on condition that your claim is successful and the court awards you recompense. This means we will take the entire responsibility of fighting the case on your behalf without asking you for any money upfront, either for our consultations or the court fees. You are only liable to pay after you win the anaesthetic negligence claim.
This is a far better way of pursuing an anaesthetic negligence claim rather than attempting to fight your claim without any legal help.