Reducing errors in surgery

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New device could drastically reduce errors made in surgery

A new surgical device has the potential to reduce the number of harmful mistakes that surgeons make while they are operating.

When patients in Arkansas have an operation done, many put their complete trust in the doctors, nurses and other medical professionals attending to them. However, medical professionals often make mistakes in the operating room that threaten the lives of their patients. According to research produced by Johns Hopkins University, "never events," or instances that should never happen during surgery, occur 4,000 times or more every year.

To reduce the number of patients who are harmed by surgical errors, according to CNN, researchers are working on a device that is designed to detect when mistakes are made in the operating room. Known as the surgical "black box," this device's purpose is also to help surgeons know what errors they are making so that they can avoid them in the future.
How this technology works
This new surgical technology is comprised of two main parts. The first component of this device is designed to be used inside of the operating room. Here, video cameras are set up to track the movements of surgeons. Outside of the operating room, a device similar to a computer analyzes the footage that is collected. After the computer analyzes the recordings, it can determine when a mistake has been made and give the surgeons instant feedback as they go forward with the operation.

Those who are working on this technology hope that someday, it will possess many other capabilities, such as the ability to:

Assess how well surgeons stitch
Determine how delicately those in the operating room handle patient organs
Analyze whether or not surgeons are able to communicate with nurses effectively during a difficult situation
The doctor heading the development of this device was prompted to start his initial research after discovering that surgeons make about 20 errors during every surgery they perform and that they often don't realize that they've made a mistake. This occurs regardless of how experienced the surgeon is.
The device's future
Up to this point, this new technology has been used during 40 operations where patients were having a laparoscopic weight-loss operation done. Now, this device's ability to prevent surgical errors will be tested in hospitals in certain areas of South America, Denmark and Canada. Interest in bringing this technology to the U.S. has also been expressed by some hospitals.

Since this innovative technology is still being tested, many patients in Arkansas and throughout the country remain at risk when they go in for surgery. If you are the victim of a surgical error, turn to an attorney in your area to determine what steps need to be taken to ensure that your legal rights are protected.

Keywords: surgical, error, medical, malpractice
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