Wrong-Patient Prostate Cancer Surgery | The Weitz Firm
Contact our Philadelphia surgical malpractice attorney Eric Weitz is ready to step in and help if you have experienced harm due to the negligence of a healthcare professional.
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May 17, 2019
The Weitz Firm, LLC

When you or a loved one need to have surgery, you know there are risks. Any procedure, regardless of how invasive, will come with a long list of what can happen. However, the last thing you should ever have to worry about in surgery is having the wrong operation done to you.

At the Weitz Firm, our qualified and experienced team is ready to step in and help if you have experienced harm due to the negligence of a healthcare professional. When you need a Philadelphia surgical malpractice lawyer, let us secure the compensation you deserve.

What Happened In This Case?

We usually do not bring you stories from outside of our coverage area, but this one highlights a danger that can happen to anyone who is facing surgery. We are learning that a man in Iowa has been awarded $12.25 million after he underwent surgery for prostate cancer.

The problem was that he did not actually have cancer.

Ricki Huitt was the victim of a medical mistake. A pathologist mixed up slides of his non-cancerous tissue with the slides of a man who did have prostate cancer. The result was that he was incorrectly diagnosed with cancer and underwent a debilitating operation that was completely unnecessary. The surgery left him with damaged nerves. He is not impotent and incontinent.

This surgery has completely altered Huitt’s life. His wife told jurors that her husband feels diminished. She says that “It’s changed our world forever.”

How These Errors Happen

We know that medical mistakes are the third leading cause of death in the US, causing an estimated 250,000 deaths annually. Millions more, like Huitt, live through the mistakes and are left dealing with consequences.

In surgery, there are things called “never event” and in this case, Huitt experienced one of them. These events can include:

  • Operating on the wrong body part.
  • Operating on the wrong person for the wrong procedure.
  • Leaving surgical objects inside of a person.
  • Performing unnecessary procedures.

The consequences of never events are

  • Temporary injury (59 percent)
  • Permanent injury (33 percent)
  • Death (6.6 percent)

Surgery is a complicated process and the entire surgical team should always strive to deliver a high standard of care. This standard of care begins well before a surgery and extends through the recovery of a patient.

What Happens Now?

Medical mistakes happen at higher rates than we realize. While we know that there are risks when it comes to any medical procedure, you should never have to worry about being harmed due to the carelessness of negligence of a medical professional.

At the Weitz Firm, our knowledgeable and experienced team will work to secure the compensation you deserve if you are a victim. This can include:

  • Coverage of all medical expenses related to the mistake, including future medical expenses
  • Recovery of lost income if you are unable to work
  • Pain and suffering/loss of enjoyment of life damages
  • Loss of consortium
  • Punitive damages against the responsible parties

When you need a Philadelphia surgical malpractice attorney, you can contact us for a free consultation by clicking here or calling 267-587-6240.

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