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(Yahoo)   Surgery tools left in 1,500 people a year   ( divider line
    More: Scary  
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4667 clicks; posted to Main » on 16 Jan 2003 at 8:44 AM (15 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

44 Comments     (+0 »)
2003-01-16 08:48:17 AM  
I just had a hot night of sex with my girlfriend. I wish I could have left my tool in her.
2003-01-16 08:53:02 AM  
The sad thing is the hospital is billing them for it....
2003-01-16 08:58:04 AM  
I wonder what the rate is in the UK?
2003-01-16 08:58:32 AM  
"Is that a retractor in your abdomen or are you happy to see me?"
2003-01-16 09:02:08 AM  
Clearly what we need is a cap on damages to plaintiffs in medical malpractice lawsuits. That will surely take care of this problem right away. Thank god the Bush administration is all over this issue.
2003-01-16 09:02:37 AM  
[image from too old to be available]

The culprit?
2003-01-16 09:03:27 AM  
"Nurse, where's that EEG that was there a minute ago?"
2003-01-16 09:03:58 AM  
My husband has a dril bit in his jaw. It broke off during surgery, and they decided to leave it.
2003-01-16 09:06:08 AM  
The study found that emergency operations are nine times more likely to lead to such mistakes, and operating-room complications requiring a change in procedure are four times more likely. A rise of one point in body-mass index, a measure of weight relative to height, raises the chances of such a mistake by 10 percent. Researchers say big patients simply provide more room and more fat in which to lose track of objects.

Another reason to lay off the donuts, you fat bastards...

2003-01-16 09:12:17 AM  
I'v forgotten tools under the hood after working on a car, does that count
2003-01-16 09:13:09 AM  
Maybe we need airport security guards in the OR too
2003-01-16 09:19:40 AM  
[image from too old to be available]
damn doctor...
2003-01-16 09:37:26 AM  
AcornMan: would you rather have a cap on malpractice suits or have insurance and lawsuits make the medical profession financially impossible? Insurance charges and the growing rate of malpractice suits are hurting a lot of doctors, who are merely trying to do their best, but are fallible humans. We need to remember the good that these people do and the rigorous training they've had.
Anyways, how will the results of malpractice cases increasing or decreasing affect what is clearly an unintended (but already highly punished) msitake?
Maybe if you're so terrified of having something left in you, you should never have surgery.
2003-01-16 10:01:32 AM  
Stealing hospital equipment is a crime. Throw the books at the thieving scum!

Sorry about that remark.........I'm in a lot of pain from a pair of forceps tucked under my spleen.
2003-01-16 10:14:48 AM  
It´s true! Watch out for the ever increasing reports of shark attacks! Don´t let your kids out, lest they fall down a well! The numbers prove it, we´re all going to die of AIDS by 2010! Don´t have promiscous sex, just in case! Don´t be homosexual, just in case! And what if the sniper is still out there? You better squat and duck-walk in a zig-zag to the pump, just in case! Never cease to remember the terrorists! Buy a gas mask! Don´t let paranoia take over you, own a gun! YOU´VE GOT TO BE SAFE! JUST IN CASE! THE NUMBERS PROVE IT! Don´t drink! Don´t smoke! Don´t go into the sun, you´ll get cancer! Don´t drive a convertible, DON´T YOU KNOW THE STATISTICS? And don´t even think about getting a motorcycle! Fine, masturbate now, you´ll regret it when you´re popping Viagra at the age of 16! Wear the school uniform or else we´ll suspend you for conspiring to carry a concealed weapon. Just in case. Better safe than sorry!

And don´t forget the killer bees!
2003-01-16 10:31:59 AM  
Corpwhore: You seem tense.
2003-01-16 10:43:50 AM  
I've had my tool in plenty of women, but I always rememember to pull it out when finishing up.
2003-01-16 10:45:40 AM  

Oh, you always promise to pull out before you finish, but you never do.

You scum.
2003-01-16 10:48:01 AM  
mmmmm, sugary tools.
2003-01-16 10:56:48 AM  
mmmmm, sugary tools.

Glad to see I'm not the only one jonesing for some sugary goodness today...
2003-01-16 10:59:08 AM  
That's not true... If I left it in every woman, the nurse would get suspicious when she didn't have anything to clean up.
Sick sick sick... this should stop now.
2003-01-16 11:02:12 AM  
Six feet of sterilized thread tied between the instrument and the doctor would solve this problem.
2003-01-16 11:02:28 AM  
um, now I can't get back to the front page... damnit!
2003-01-16 11:05:25 AM  
2003-01-16 11:13:54 AM  
No wonder I shiat out a scalpel this morning.
2003-01-16 11:52:10 AM  
I saw the xray of this guy...that instrument is farking HUGE! I guess to have someone actually count the gear before and after surgery is optional.
2003-01-16 12:11:29 PM  
Having worked in the field I only have one thing to say...... IS THAT ALL?????
2003-01-16 12:14:31 PM  
I hope you don't get any drill bits left in you by the HR dept. tomorrow. GOOD LUCK!
2003-01-16 12:20:04 PM  
Dawg - the instrument and sponge count is NOT NOT NOT optional on any abdominal surgery. In fact it is done two or three times. When instruments are left, the count is usually WRONG (in that it says it is OK, when it is not). Think about it....if the count is wrong, you keep looking until you find the instrument.
2003-01-16 12:29:47 PM  
Man where did I leave that belt sander??
2003-01-16 12:35:23 PM  
They need surgical tools with those keychain beepers that go off when you whistle.
2003-01-16 12:37:05 PM  
I had surgery once.. or twice. Stupid doctor left this damn metal plate in my head... eh.. oh well. Makes for neat party tricks though :P
2003-01-16 12:37:22 PM  
There is something like 28 Million surgery's preformed in the US every year. 1500 surgery tools left in is fark all.
2003-01-16 12:47:40 PM  
1500 surgery tools left in is fark all.

That's not what they said. 1500 people. No doubt there was the odd guy that went home with 5 or 6 extra bits.
2003-01-16 12:51:09 PM  
Those damn medical instruments are farking expensive as hell. I would be a lot more careful. Leaving a sponge inside someone is fine, they are cheap; but anything else is just wasting money.
2003-01-16 01:02:16 PM  
ummm. ouch!
2003-01-16 01:24:24 PM  
This story was edited or different from the one I read on yahoo last night. Anybody else catch it? Something along the lines of "It's more likely to happen in fat patients". Not obese....not overweight...fat! That's friggin brilliant!!
2003-01-16 02:47:37 PM  
I think its important to keep this all in perspective. I mean, doctors are human, and as such, are liable to make mistakes. That's why counts, before and after, are required.

Not only are there 28 million surgeries in America a year, but most of the "tools" being left behind in patients aren't dangerous. Its much, much more likely to be a small piece of sterile gauze than anything metal. And while we all hear about the huge and hideous clamps that get accidentally left inside people, the reasons that these stories get so much publicity is that they're so rare.

So, 0.00005% of people might go home with a little extra. Scary, but not a terribly realistic threat.
2003-01-16 04:31:41 PM  
So that's what that funny feeling is by my diaphragm. Damn those doccies!
2003-01-16 05:00:21 PM  
Related but not quite the same: My great-grandma was operated on, but no tools were left in her. Nope- Instead she got someone else's bacteria from a scalpel no one bothered to clean. Now- I can almost understand losing really small, sterile items in a person. Most are no more harmful than a piercing or pacemaker. But using non-sterile equipment? People should lose thier jobs for that.
2003-01-16 05:04:48 PM  
Actually Normalcy, while I appreciate the sentiment, a sponge is more dangerous than a steel instrument. The sponge acts as a home to the bacteria (because of all the surface area in the fibers) while the steel usually just gets walled off by the body.....remember, we leave steel in all the time as valves, and joint repairs.

But it is true that while 1500 sounds like a lot, it is really a small number when compared to the number of surgeries. And as the article states, most of this happens in severe emergencies - where the nurse who is responsible for the count may be occupied doing something deemed much more important at the time (getting blood, etc.). Also, when the fur is really flying, we often are asking for things at such a rapid clip, that the count gets out of whack.....I always get an X-ray in those situations, but I can see how it can happen.

By the way, I wonder how many clients of lawyers complain about the tool left in their rectum after they bend over and hand over the fee???
2003-01-16 05:07:03 PM  
Pseudomonas -
I agree. If this did actually happen, then the guilty should lose their license as well. But....scalpels are all disposable now, so was this many years ago?
2003-01-16 11:21:34 PM  

Step off, voice of reason!

/Penny Arcade
2003-01-17 10:32:39 AM  
Surgery tools left in 1,500 people a year

The really scary thing is that they're talking about one set of tools!
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