Multiple lawsuits have been initiated against three cardiologists and a hospital in Northwest Indiana. These medical malpractice charges involve unnecessary cardiac surgeries and other invasive procedures. According to recent news reports, these range from open heart surgery to pacemaker implantation. At least one person has died from complications related to the procedures.
The recent slew of lawsuits against the hospital and the three doctors is just one example of a common problem in medicine. Unnecessary major surgeries and other invasive procedures not only lead to enormous financial waste — they can also exact steep costs in health and quality of life.
The costs of unnecessary surgery
Last year, USA Today published a review of various medical databases and government records, estimating that each year in the US, there are tens of thousands of unnecessary surgical procedures. This problem may be especially prevalent in some areas of surgery, such as those involving the heart and spine. Another government study showed that for specific kinds of controversial surgery, up to 30% of these procedures could be unnecessary.
The costs of unnecessary surgical procedures include the following:
- Infection, blood clots, paralysis and other surgical complications.
- Unnecessary loss of organs or organ functioning.
- The need for followup surgeries and other expensive procedures.
- Overall diminished health and quality of life.
- Surgical scars and other cosmetic blemishes.
- Days or even months of missed work.
- Enormous medical bills.
Unnecessary surgical procedures also lead to a profound loss of trust. Patients depend on doctors to look out for them and their best interests. Often, these unnecessary surgeries are performed for financial gain, due to the fee-for-service business model.
How can you tell if your surgical procedure was unnecessary?
Some patients have found out that they underwent unnecessary surgery because they received secondary opinions from other doctors. Other patients experienced some sort of complication, prompting them to look more closely into the circumstances surrounding their surgery.
If you believe that you have been subjected to an unnecessary surgical procedure, be sure to contact us. Your health should be the top priority for doctors and other healthcare providers, and you should not have to struggle alone with the burdens of an unnecessary procedure. We know your rights and the compensation that you might be entitled to. As always, we offer a free consultation to discuss your specific surgeries and injuries.