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Malpractice suit claims surgery performed on wrong side of brain

As many Oregon patients have experienced, medical mistakes can happen at even the best medical facilities. Hospital staff negligence can take many forms. It may result in a patient being administered the wrong medication, surgical errors or the failure to diagnose a disease. Even for those who protect the rights of injured patients, shocking claims of medical malpractice have been asserted in a new lawsuit filed against a Midwest doctor.

The suit accuses the doctor of performing surgery on the wrong side of a 53-year-old woman's brain. The patient had originally gone to a hospital to undergo a "left-sided craniotomy bypass" operation. The operation was scheduled after she had suffered from strokes for five years. Its purpose was to prevent future strokes.

Prior to the surgery on the wrong side of her brain, she was mobile and able to take care of herself. Following the surgery, she requires constant care for her basic needs. According to the patient's attorney, the incorrect side of her head was prepped for surgery. The entire procedure was performed without any of the surgical team noticing that it was on the wrong side of her brain.

The hospital's CEO and president issued a statement apologizing for the mistake. However, no amount of apologies will repair the irreparable harm suffered by the patient. Along with the medical expenses and long-term care needed by the patient, she has lost the ability to function on a basic level and care for herself. The malpractice claim, if successful, will help the patient recover compensation for her damages and the costs of her ongoing medical care.

Source: The Huffington Post, "Regina Turner brain surgery: lawsuit alleges Missouri doctor performed wrong-sided craniotomy," Hunter Stuart, May 6, 2013

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