Latest News & Views

Posted on 30th May 2018

Surgeon Operates In Wrong Place Despite Arrow Marking

A 61-year-old man woke up from surgery at Castle Hill Hospital in East Yorkshire only to be told the procedure would need to be performed again. Despite having a marking on his arm to indicate the site of the surgery, the surgeon operated on the outside of the elbow rather than the inside. After the operation, the surgeon realised his mistake and apologised to the patient.

The operation was elective ulnar nerve decompression surgery, which was designed to restore feeling in the patient’s fingers. The patient visited his GP who recommended the surgery after he began to experience numbness in his fingers. After surgery, the physician said that ‘something did not feel right’ and then realised the error.

Wrong site surgery, where a surgeon operates in the wrong place is described as a ‘never event’ by the NHS as it is an issue that is so serious that it should never occur. The mistake was wholly avoidable, and the NHS took full responsibility for the damage caused to the patient.

The patient was awarded damages through a medical negligence claim. During the claim, the Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs Castle Hill Hospital, admitted a breach of duty. For peace of mind and to learn lessons for the future, they ran a serious incident report.

The surgeon apologised and reported himself to the medical council. The physician said it was his first mistake in 32 years. However, the patient was shocked that a surgeon of such calibre would make such a simple mistake.

The patient has since had corrective surgery and is undergoing recovery after an understandably difficult time.

What Negligence Claimline say

Wrong site surgery is classed by the NHS as a never event, however, from April 2015 and March 2016 447 never events took place. At Negligence Claimline, we have helped many people who have suffered as a result of wrong site surgery. If you have been affected by wrong site surgery, then we can help. Our solicitors can help you to receive the answers you deserve and, where necessary, financial compensation.

Your story is important to us, get in touch to find out how we can help.