Houston Wrong Side Surgery Lawyer

Medical Negligence Resulting in Wrong-Side Surgeries

Operating on the wrong side of an individual’s body is a terrifying reality that, unfortunately, some patients must deal with. According to the National Center for Biotechnical Information (NCBI), “Wrong-side surgery is probably the most dramatic, visible and devastating of all surgical errors.” It can be the result of a number of causes; however, in most cases, this degree of medical malpractice is highly preventable. Some examples of wrong side surgery, which is also referred to as wrong-site surgery are:

  • Operating on the wrong side of the body
  • Operating on the wrong location on the body
  • Using the incorrect procedure

If you or someone you love is undergoing serious complications as a result of wrong-side surgery, call (800) 298-0111 for a free case evaluation with an experienced medical malpractice attorney today.

surgical incision on forearmWhat Are the Causes of Wrong-Sided Surgery?

Wrong-site surgery may be due to one of the following:

  • Misinterpretation of x-ray or patient charts
  • Mislabeling of body parts during preoperative care
  • Misunderstanding of patient’s symptoms and illness
  • Doctor inattentiveness
  • Failure to follow the preoperative protocol
  • Drug or alcohol impairment of the surgeon
  • Miscommunication between medical professionals.

According to a report published by the NCBI, “the Joint Commission found the top root causes of wrong-side surgery to be communication failure (70 percent), procedural noncompliance (64 percent), and leadership (46 percent).”

Wrong-Side Surgery Can Have Devastating Effects

It does not take years of medical experience to understand the gravity of a medical professional operating on the wrong side of a patient’s body. Whether it is removing healthy tissue instead of cancerous tissue, or opening the wrong side of a patient’s skull, the devastating effects of wrong-side surgery can be painful and exhausting. While it is a rare occurrence, when wrong-site surgeries do occur, consulting an experienced medical malpractice attorney can help ensure you are fully protected.

Preventing Wrong-Side Surgery

The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS) and the North American Spine Society (NASS), are two organizations that pioneered the efforts of awareness and prevention when it comes to wrong-site surgeries. While these efforts focused primarily on making physical markings on patients before surgery, over the years the advances in medicine and technology have complicated these solutions. In 2003, the Joint Commission released the Universal Protocol for Preventing Wrong Site, Wrong Procedure, and Wrong Person Surgery. The universal protocol provides updated educational and preventative materials for medical providers to help ensure they are always keeping their patients safe.

The simple fact is, if the prep team marks the spot with an “x” with a simple marker and the surgeon confirms it from the patient’s medical orders, there is simply no reason that a surgeon should ever make the mistake of operating on the wrong arm or wrong leg. However, it does still happen.

Attorneys for Wrong-Side Surgery

If you or someone you love was seriously injured due to the negligence of wrong-side surgery, call (800) 298-0111 today. We provide free case evaluations for medical malpractice claims, and if we cannot represent you, we will help you find a medical malpractice lawyer who can. At Simmons and Fletcher, P.C., we believe no one injured due to the negligence of another party should deal with it alone. Contact us today to learn more about your rights. The consultation is free and we charge you no attorney fees and no case expenses unless we win your case.



If you have a personal injury case and would like to know whether it is something that our law firm can help you with, please fill out the form to the right and submit your information or pick up the phone and call us between 8:30 AM and 4:00 PM on Monday through Thursday and 8:30 AM  and 5:00 PM on Friday and out intake team can go help evaluate your case and determine who the best person is for you to talk to about your case. Consultations are 100% free and you have no obligation to hire us.


Simmons and Fletcher, P.C., rooted in Christian values, exclusively handles personal injury cases, advocating for the rights of accident and negligence victims. Our Houston-based team, dedicated to compassion and excellence, handles cases across car accidents, motorcycle accidents, truck accidents, slip and falls, dog bites, and other types of cases with a commitment to personalized care. Upholding integrity and client-focused service, we strive for impactful legal outcomes. For a detailed understanding of our approach and team, visit our attorneys page.

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