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Blood Contamination Errors

Medical Malpractice Lawyers Representing Victims in Ocala

Oxygen is made available to all the cells and organs in the body through the bloodstream. Often patients who need to have surgery or certain forms of therapy need to have blood transfusions. Blood transfusions carry with them the risk of contamination. If your blood is contaminated, you may develop an infection, or suffer a serious illness like hepatitis or AIDS. At the Dean Law Firm, our experienced Ocala medical malpractice attorneys may be able to represent you if you were harmed by a blood contamination error.

Blood Contamination Errors

Sometimes during surgery, patients need blood. For example, a patient might lose too much blood during an operation and require a transfusion of blood. If the transfused blood is contaminated, it can cause post-surgical problems. Blood contamination errors can arise if surgical instruments aren't appropriately cleaned before being used in an operation. When blood has been stored in a blood bank, it may be contaminated if not properly protected from such things as bacteria.

Other factors can cause blood contamination, such as inappropriate dialysis practices, inappropriate blood donor screening, lack of complete skin-core removal, and inappropriate completion of blood transfusions. Sometimes blood transfusion errors are also the result of communication or paperwork problems such as incomplete verification of someone's ability to donate non-infected blood, or mislabeling of a blood sample. Sometimes the wrong type of blood is transfused.

Professionals are supposed to take many different steps to reduce the chances of a patient being transfused with contaminated blood. They are supposed to carefully screen donors for the risk of infection. They are also supposed to properly disinfect skin before doing a blood draw, since skin carries bacteria. Generally, diverting up to 30 ml of blood improves the chances it won't include bacteria.

When there's no adverse reaction, a blood transfusion error may go undetected. However, when blood is contaminated and causes and infection, the patient may be injured. If you were injured by a blood contamination error, you may be able to sue for damages in a medical malpractice lawsuit. Medical malpractice is professional negligence. There is a special relationship between a patient and his or her doctor and other health care providers such that they are required to follow a professional standard of care when diagnosing or treating a patient.

Liability for medical malpractice can be shown by establishing it is more likely than not that the following occurred: (1) there was a doctor-patient relationship that created a professional standard of care, (2) breach of the professional standard of care, (3) actual and proximate causation, and (4) actual damages. Medical malpractice may be perpetrated by a doctor or nurse or other health care provider. In most cases, a medical malpractice lawyer will need to hire an expert to examine the facts and determine whether the conduct of the different potentially responsible people fell below a professional standard of care. The professional standard of care is determined by how a reasonable careful health care provider in the same field would have acted or not acted under the same circumstances. However, individual variables such as the medical history, age, and sex of the patient can affect what the professional standard of care is in a particular situation.

Medical malpractice is negligence perpetrated by a health care provider. In some cases, a hospital lab may be held liable for a blood contamination error. However, the blood contamination may occur as a result of actions by an outside lab. In such cases, it may be necessary to pursue damages under a theory of ordinary negligence.

Consult a Knowledgeable Medical Malpractice Attorney Serving Ocala

At the Dean Law Firm, our aggressive and experienced Ocala trial lawyers may be able to recover damages on your behalf if you or a loved one was harmed by a blood contamination errors. We serve patients injured by medical negligence across the state of Florida, including those in Crystal River, The Villages, and Levy, Sumter, Citrus, Lake, and Marion Counties. Contact us through our online form or at 352-387-8700.