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North Carolina Medical Malpractice Attorneys: Stories of Wrong Side Surgery: A Terrifying Medical Error
• In 2001, construction worker Kevin Walsh went in for brain surgery to remove a dangerous blood clot. Two talented surgeons opened the 41-year-old man’s skull to drain the hematoma and save the man’s life – only to find they had operated on the wrong side of his body.
• In just two years, Rhode Island Hospital recorded five different wrong side operations – three in which doctors operated on the wrong sides of patients’ brains. The mistakes led to fines and medical malpractice lawsuits.
• In September 2009, patient Francisco Torres, 72, had his healthy kidney removed instead of his diseased one – leaving him with no working kidneys and painful dialysis treatments every three days for the rest of this life.
• Richard Flagg entered the hospital with a diseased and cancerous lung – but during the surgery doctors removed his healthy lung by accident. The man survived for three years with only his bad lung before dying of the medical malpractice mistake.
• Even though nurses had clearly labeled the correct operation site, an orthopedic surgeon operated on the wrong foot of a patient in Boston. It was the fifth wrong site surgery to take place in Massachusetts in as many months.