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Philadelphia Anesthesia Error Attorneys

Anesthesia is a necessary part of surgery. Anesthesia is a medical treatment to control a patient’s feeling of pain through the administration of anesthetic drugs to reduce their pain. There are different types of anesthesia, and like all drugs, they come with different risks to the patient. Anesthesia errors can lead to serious injury and death. If you have suffered injury or lost a family member because of anesthesia errors, you might be entitled to compensation. For more information about your rights and how one of our Philadelphia anesthesia error attorneys can help you, call Youman & Caputo at (215) 302-1999.

Philadelphia Anesthesia Error Resources

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Why Choose Our Attorneys?
What Are the Different Types of Anesthesia?
Possible Complications From Anesthesia
Common Injuries From Anesthesia Complications
What Causes an Anesthesia Error?
Benefits of Hiring an Anesthesia Error Attorney
Potential Compensation for Your Injuries
Proving Negligence in Your Case
What is the Statute of Limitations?
Call an Attorney Today

Philadelphia Anesthesia Error Attorney

Why Choose Our Philadelphia Anesthesia Error Attorneys?

  • At Youman & Caputo, personalized client attention is a core principle of our firm. Our clients can speak with one of the name partners anytime they have questions, want an update, or when there is an important development in their case.

Let our partners’ nearly 50 years of combined experience work for you. Call today to schedule your free consultation.

What Are the Different Types of Anesthesia?

There are different types of anesthesia. The type used depends on the patient’s medical condition, the type of procedure, the patient’s preference, and what is safe for the patient. The different types of anesthesia include:

  • Local anesthesia: local anesthesia numbs a small area of the body. It is usually administered as an injection or sometimes a cream. It does not put the patient to sleep. The patient remains awake and alert, but will feel no pain in the area being treated. Local anesthesia is used for minor procedures like stitching a deep cut, removing a mole or cyst, or resetting a broken bone.
  • Regional anesthesia: regional anesthesia numbs a large area of the body. Just like with local anesthesia, the patient remains awake and aware but feels no pain in the area. Regional anesthesia is usually administered in the nerves that provide feeling for the area to be treated. Two common types of regional anesthesia are epidural and spinal anesthesia.
    • Spinal anesthesia is used for surgeries involving the lower body such as the pelvic and rectal areas, as well as the lower extremities. It is often used in childbirth or for orthopedic surgeries such as total knee and hip replacements.
    • Epidural anesthesia is similar to spinal anesthesia and is used for the same types of procedures. The main difference between the epidural anesthesia and the spinal anesthesia is in the administration of the anesthetic. While the spinal anesthesia is a single dose of anesthetic medicine injected into the lower back, epidural anesthesia is a continuous infusion of anesthetic medicine into the lower back through a hollow catheter.
  • General anesthesia: general anesthesia puts the patient to “sleep.” This is what most people think of first when they are talking about anesthesia. Under general anesthesia, the patient is unconscious and unaware of what is going on. They feel no sensations. General anesthesia can be administered as gas or vapor given through a mask or breathing tube. They can also be administered intravenously through an IV injection. While a patient is under general anesthesia, the anesthesiologist must continuously monitor the patient’s vital signs to make sure they are steady. After the surgical procedure is over, the anesthesiologist reverses the effect of the general anesthesia to awaken the patient and bring them back to consciousness. They must also monitor the patients in recovery to make sure their vital signs are stable.

What Are Some Possible Complications From Anesthesia?

Although all forms of anesthesia carry some risk of complications, general anesthesia carries the most risk. Advances in science have improved surgical procedures and anesthesia, however, as with any medical procedure, there are risks involved in the administration of anesthesia. These are some of the common complications that a patient can experience from anesthesia:

Breathing difficulty – patients who have been treated with anesthesia can experience breathing difficulty during and after their procedure. Patients with pre-existing conditions such as sleep apnea may have difficulty regaining consciousness after their procedure, or they may stop breathing during their procedure. Smokers may also suffer this complication from anesthesia.

Postoperative cognitive dysfunction – this is a serious complication from anesthesia most common among elderly patients. It is a state where a patient experiences a decline in their memory or cognitive function after surgery. This condition is well known to anesthesiologists. Patients with some pre-existing conditions like congestive heart failure, Alzheimer’s disease, and Parkinson’s disease are more prone to this complication. It is important for an anesthesiologist to carefully assess the patient’s medical history to avoid possible complications.

Malignant hyperthermia – this is a complication from anesthesia drugs that causes the body to react with dangerously high body temperature and muscle spasms. This is a potentially fatal complication from anesthesia.

Common Injuries From Anesthesia Complications 

If anything goes awry during patient intubation or the administration of anesthesia, the patient can suffer serious or life-threatening injuries. While minor anesthesia complications can cause symptoms such as nausea, dizziness, blurred vision or fatigue, more serious anesthesia complications can be dire or deadly. Severe anesthesia errors or complications can change a victim’s life by inflicting severe injuries, such as:

  • Cerebral hypoxia (reduced oxygen flow to the brain)
  • Cerebral anoxia (no oxygen flow to the brain)
  • Loss of blood flow to the brain
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Anaphylaxis (severe allergic reactions)
  • Respiratory problems
  • Blood clots
  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Infections (such as meningitis) or abscesses
  • Nerve damage or paralysis
  • Seizures
  • Unconsciousness/coma
  • Delirium or confusion
  • Emotional or psychological trauma
  • Wrongful death

Whether you suffer a serious lack of oxygen to the brain or require the services of a spinal cord injury attorney in Philadelphia, our team is prepared to help. Severe injuries could be caused by a mistake in the type or dosage of the anesthesia drugs administered (overdoses or underdoses). They can also be caused by the incorrect administration of the anesthesia itself. Spinal cord injuries can arise due to issues with an epidural or spinal anesthesia, for example. When administered incorrectly, powerful drugs going to the wrong area around the spine can be catastrophic. Sadly, many patients do not survive severe anesthesia errors.

What Causes an Anesthesia Error?

Anesthesia errors are almost always preventable. They occur most often due to negligence or a lapse in judgment on the anesthesiologist’s part. A disorganized or poorly run hospital can also result in anesthesia errors. According to a study by the National Institutes of Health, the most common causes of anesthesia errors are as follows:

  • Lack of experience
  • Poor communication with medical team
  • Carelessness
  • Failure to perform normal checks on patient
  • Lack of adequate supervision
  • Distraction

These are all possible grounds for a Philadelphia medical malpractice claim. If you or a family member has suffered from anesthesia errors, you may be entitled to financial compensation.

Benefits of Hiring a Philadelphia Anesthesia Error Attorney

Any kind of medical malpractice case in Philadelphia will be complex. This practice area involves intricate and nuanced laws that can be difficult to navigate on your own as an injured patient or surviving family member. Cases involving anesthesia errors are no exception. You can benefit in many ways from hiring an attorney to represent you during this type of lawsuit, including:

  • Answers to your legal questions and advice that you can trust.
  • A faster, cheaper and more effective legal process.
  • A comprehensive investigation into the cause of the anesthesia error.
  • Connections to medical experts, doctors and anesthesiologists.
  • Professional evidence preservation and collection.
  • An accurate evaluation of how much your case is worth.
  • A lawyer going up against a hospital and its insurance company for you.
  • Aggressive settlement negotiations for maximum value.
  • Representation during an anesthesia error court trial in Philadelphia, if necessary.
  • More time and energy to focus on healing from your injuries.

When you hire a law firm to advocate for you during the legal process, you gain access to state-of-the-art resources and experienced lawyers who will be responsible for handling every aspect of your case. You can enjoy greater peace of mind during this difficult time while your lawyer prepares your case and handles negotiations between you and the other parties involved in your lawsuit.

Potential Compensation After an Anesthesia Error

Anesthesia errors are serious mistakes with serious consequences. If you or a loved one has suffered injuries because of a preventable anesthesia error in Philadelphia, you may be entitled to financial compensation (also known as damages) for multiple losses. Pennsylvania law entitles an injured victim to both economic and noneconomic damages connected to the act of medical malpractice. 

 The potential compensation that you could receive after an anesthesia error typically includes:

  • Past and future medical expenses
  • Any revision surgeries needed
  • Medications or special medical devices
  • Disabilities that require ongoing care
  • Physical therapy or rehabilitation
  • Existing lost wages and lost future earning capacity
  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress and mental anguish
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Loss of consortium
  • Punitive damages, in some cases (to punish the defendant)

If your loved one tragically died due to a preventable anesthesia error in Philadelphia, your family may also be eligible for wrongful death damages. These can include reasonable funeral and burial arrangements, the deceased person’s final medical bills, lost wages and inheritance, lost companionship and care, loss of household services, and pain and suffering. Learn the value of your case from an attorney before saying yes to a settlement from an insurance company to avoid accepting less than you deserve.

Proving Medical Negligence in an Anesthesia Error Case

When you file an anesthesia error case or any type of catastrophic injury lawsuit in Philadelphia, the burden of proof rests with you as the plaintiff. This means it is your or your attorney’s responsibility to prove the basis of your claim using evidence. The burden of proof is not “beyond a reasonable doubt,” as it is in a criminal case, but “a preponderance of the evidence.” This is also known as the “more likely than not” standard, as it requires clear and convincing evidence that medical negligence caused the victim’s injuries with at least a 51 percent likelihood.

Proving medical negligence in a case involving an anesthesia error often requires multiple forms of evidence. Common examples include testimony from a medical expert or anesthesiologist, the patient’s medical records and related documents, and eyewitness statements. An attorney in Philadelphia can preserve and collect compelling evidence for you to support the basis of your injury claim.

Statute of Limitations for a Philadelphia Anesthesia Error

If you wish to file a claim or lawsuit for an anesthesia error in Philadelphia, you must obey Pennsylvania’s statute of limitations. This is a legal deadline or time limit on the right to file a claim. All personal injury and medical malpractice cases in Pennsylvania must abide by their respective statutes of limitations. If you wait too long and file after your statute of limitations has expired, the courts will most likely bar you from making a financial recovery, even if you have evidence of a preventable anesthesia error. 

The statute of limitations on most medical malpractice cases in Pennsylvania is two years from the date that the act of medical negligence occurred. If the victim did not discover his or her injuries right away, however, the statute of limitations may be “tolled,” or extended, to two years from the date of reasonable discovery. There are some exceptions for special cases, such as if the victim is a minor under the age of 18 or if the defendant is a government entity. It is important to contact an attorney in Philadelphia as soon as possible to avoid missing your statute of limitations to file.

Contact a Legal Professional Today

The Philadelphia anesthesia error attorneys at Youman & Caputo are experienced in medical malpractice law. We will protect your best interests and fight to get you justice in your case. Your initial consultation is at no cost to you. Call us today at to schedule your free consultation with one of our injury and wrongful death lawyers in Philadelphia.