According to an October 2013 study, avoidable hospital errors have become the third leading cause of death in the United States, resulting in up to 440,000 deaths per year. When something is wrong, we go to the hospital looking for refuge. However, in light of this new research, we may be left wondering how to protect ourselves from becoming just another statistic.

In my experience as a medical malpractice lawyer, I have learned that knowledge is power. The more you know, the safer you will be.

Here’s a list of 10 common hospital errors you should look out for:

1. Medication Errors

  • Wrong prescription
  • Inaccurate administration of the drug
  • Wrong dosage
  • Malfunction of the equipment that administers drugs
  • 60% of patients miss their regular medication while in the hospital

2. Misdiagnosis

  • Wrong diagnosis
  • Failure to diagnose

3. Infections

  • 1.7 million people every year get infections from the hospital
  • 100,000 deaths every year from hospital infections
  • Pneumonia
  • Infection of surgery site
  • Urinary track infection (UTI) from catheters
  • Bloodstream infection from IV

4. Surgical Mistakes

  • Treating the wrong patient
  • Operating on the wrong body part
  • Puncturing organs
  • Leaving surgical tools inside patient’s body
  • Confusing chest tube with feeding tube
  • Negligent post-operative care

5. Anesthesia Mistakes

  • Not enough anesthesia (patient wakes up during surgery)
  • Too much anesthesia (brain injury or death)
  • Failure to investigate patient’s history for possible complications
  • Failure to inform patient of risks
  • Failure to monitor patients’ vitals
  • Improper intubation
  • Defective Equipment

6. Obstetric errors

  • Brain injuries
  • Bone fractures
  • Negligent prenatal care
  • Negligent use of delivery tools such as forceps and vacuum extractors
  • Failure to diagnose conditions in mother or child
  • Failure to anticipate complications and plan accordingly
  • Failure to order c-section when necessary
  • Failure to respond to fetal distress

7. Uncoordinated Care

  • On-call doctors changing
  • Inconsistent treatment
  • Unnecessary testing
  • Missed warning signs
  • Lack of Communication

8. Injury from Falls

  • 500,000 patients fall in the hospital every year
  • Lack of supervision
  • Under-staffing
  • Unsafe conditions

9. Early Discharge

  • 1 in 5 Medicare patients return to the hospital within 30 days of discharge
  • Patients are discharged before they are ready
  • Patients don’t understand follow-up care
  • Transition from hospital to home is difficult

10. Delay in treatment

  • Patients health problems escalating while they wait in the emergency room
  • Doctors missing warning signs
  • Failure to diagnose in a timely manner
  • Unnecessary testing

The best way to avoid becoming a victim of hospital errors is to be your own advocate. Pay close attention to your treatments. Ask questions. Understand your body, and be able to recognize when things aren’t right. Get to know your doctors, and learn about your treatment.

If you or a loved one was a victim of any of these hospital errors, you need to call me immediately at 1 (877) 944-4373.

As your medical malpractice lawyer, I’ll be there for you, and I’ll Make Them Pay!®

Author: Tim Misny | For 33 years, personal injury lawyer Tim Misny has represented the injured victim in birth injurymedical malpractice, and catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases, serving “Cleveland, Akron/Canton, Columbus & Cincinnati, Ohio.” You can reach Tim by email at


Article Name
10 Common Hospital Errors: How to Avoid Medical Malpractice
No one wants to be a victim of a hospital error as a result of medical malpractice. Understand what you can do to avoid becoming a victim. Tim Misny, a top Hospital/Medical Malpractice lawyer in Ohio addresses 10 common hospital errors to be aware of.
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