Errors in Anaesthesia
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The process of putting a patient under anaesthetic and safely keeping him or her there is complex and risky and an anaesthetist’s training is every bit as rigorous as that of the surgeon performing the operation. Unfortunately, mistakes and negligence can happen at all of the main stages of anaesthetic administration, sometimes with tragic consequences.
Negligent Anaesthesia Preparation
Critical to the successful application of an anaesthetic is its preparation, ensuring that the correct levels of anaesthetic are applied to keep the patient pain-free throughout the operation without overdosing. Too much anaesthetic can lead to damage to vital organs and, in some cases, the death of the patient.
It is also essential that an anaesthetist properly consults the patient’s medical records to ensure that the type and amount of an anaesthetic is appropriate. Factors to take into consideration include age, weight, allergies, the length of time since the patient’s last meal, existing medications and anything the patient may have taken shortly before an operation. Given the additional risks involved, it is also important to evaluate whether a general anaesthetic is essential or whether a local anaesthetic could be used instead.