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Organ Damage Caused by Surgical Errors

Syracuse Lawyers for Patients Harmed by Medical Malpractice

It may be necessary to undergo surgery in order to save your life or allow you to function. While you trust that your surgeon and her team will take appropriate steps, mistakes can occur. While surgery is never without risk, certain harms can be prevented where a surgeon abides by a professional standard of care. Complications may be the result of incompetence or an inadvertent failure to meet the professional standard of care. If you suffered organ damage caused by surgical errors, you should consult with the Syracuse medical malpractice attorneys of DeFrancisco & Falgiatano. We are experienced in dealing with the complexities posed by medical malpractice lawsuits, including finding the expert witnesses who can analyze your case. It’s important to retain a lawyer who works with reputable doctors and understands the prerequisites to bringing suit.

Organ Damage Caused by Surgical Errors

Surgical errors can result in organ damage. When a surgeon misuses a surgical instrument or makes a mistake while performing a procedure, he can perforate or puncture an organ. There are also other types of organ damage that may be sustained and may reveal themselves through symptoms such as abdominal pain, fatigue, septic shock, blood in urine or your stools, and paleness of skin.

Mistakes may be the result of failure to address unexpected complications as they arise, incompetence, overworked medical teams, poor communication, misidentification of areas of the body, improper procedures, retained foreign bodies, errors in suturing, anesthesia errors, mishandling of surgical instruments, poor planning, failure to sterilize surgical instruments, and delays in performing needed surgeries. For example, if a physician applies too much force to an endoscope during a colonoscopy, he may perforate the colon. If the doctor does not notice and treat the perforation, the patient could experience abdominal pain, sepsis or even death.

Medical Malpractice

Not every error constitutes medical malpractice. In order to hold a surgeon liable for organ damage, you will need to establish: (1) the defendant surgeon owed you a professional standard of care, (2) deviation from the professional standard of care, (3) causation, and (4) damages. The professional standard of care is determined by looking at what a competent health care provider in the same specialty and in the same geographic region would have done under the same or similar circumstances. For instance, if your kidney was nicked by a urologist during surgery resulting in serious damage, you would need to look at the professional standard of care for urologists in Syracuse.

You will need to retain a credible expert in the same specialty as the defendant to review your case and determine whether you have a viable claim. If your attorneys decide to file a medical malpractice complaint, they will also need to file a certificate of merit that states that they consulted with a medical expert who knows the facts and has reviewed the medical record and has determined there is a reasonable basis for the lawsuit.

Often it’s necessary at trial to put forward expert testimony regarding what the professional standard of care was, how it was breached and causation. Depending on the nature of the injuries, it may be necessary to retain an expert on the question of damages as well. For example, if the organ damage leaves you disabled such that you can no longer work, we might need to retain an expert economist to testify about your potential loss of earnings based on your remaining number of working years along with your educational and professional credentials.


A patient harmed by organ damage caused by surgical errors may be entitled to compensation. The damages in such a case may include economic and noneconomic components. Economic losses can include emergency care, the costs of additional surgeries, prescription drugs, rehabilitation and lost income. Noneconomic losses can include pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment. In some cases, organ damage is fatal. Survivors may be able to recover wrongful death damages.

Consult a Medical Malpractice Lawyer in Syracuse

DeFrancisco & Falgiatano represents patients and families who have been harmed by surgical errors. We represent clients in Syracuse, Rochester, and other cities in Upstate New York, including in Cooperstown, Auburn, Oneida, Canandaigua, Binghamton, Lyons, Wampsville, Oswego, Utica, Watertown, Elmira, Herkimer, Ithaca, and Lowville. Please contact us at 833-200-2000 or via our online form to schedule a consultation.

Client Reviews
"We were very impressed with how Jeff DeFrancisco represented us at trial and we were extremely happy when the jury found in our favor." D.M., Auburn, NY
"I suffered a serious injury as a result of medical malpractice. My husband and I retained Jeff DeFrancisco to assist us in this case. We were extremely happy with his representation and highly recommend him." Kelley R., Syracuse, NY
Since the insurance company was unwilling to settle the matter my case ultimately went to trial. At trial Jeff DeFrancisco did an absolutely amazing job by obtaining a very favorable result for me." T.H., Oneida, NY
"I highly recommend DeFrancisco & Falgiatano - Charlie represented me for a medical malpractice case. He is the best of the best. He is friendly and I am very happy with the representation he provided." Roger N., Oneida, NY