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What is keyhole surgery?

Victor Lewin - Monday, August 14, 2017

Keyhole surgery, also known as laparoscopic surgery or band aid surgery, is a modern surgical technique in which operations are performed using long, thin instruments which are inserted into the body through small incisions. It is used to diagnose a wide range of conditions that develop in the abdomen or pelvis. Keyhole surgery can also be used to remove damaged or diseased organs or to remove tissue samples for biopsies.

The Risks of Keyhole Surgery

Keyhole surgery is intended to be a minimally invasive surgery (MIS) with few complications. However, the Canadian Medical Protective Association (CMPA) - an organization that provides legal defence, liability protection, and risk management education for physicians in Canada - has confirmed the potential dangers of keyhole surgery in a recently-released publication.

The CMPA conducted a review of 423 closed medical legal involving keyhole surgeries. Peer experts were critical of the care provided in the majority of these cases (74%).

The results of the review revealed that patients who underwent keyhole surgery suffered numerous injuries to their bowel, blood vessels, nerves and reproductive organs. The review noted that 40% of patients suffered severe harm or, tragically, died.

The surgeries most frequently utilizing this technique were cholecystectomy, hysterectomy and other gynecological procedures (e.g. salpingo-oophorectomy), appendectomy (surgical removal of the appendix), and nephrectomy (surgical removal of a kidney).  To read further about the CMPA’s review, please visit: https://www.cmpa-acpm.ca/en/advice-publications/browse-articles/2017/shining-a-light-on-the-medical-legal-risks-of-laparoscopic-surgery.

How Do Injuries Happen During Keyhole Surgery?

Some patient injuries as a result of keyhole surgery are deemed to be unavoidable or an “act of God”.

Others are alleged to result from surgical inexperience. Complications such as undetected injuries to blood vessels causing haemorrhage or a perforated bowel can also contribute to serious injury or death.

I have suffered a serious injury, what can I do?

Injuries from keyhole or laparoscopic surgery can be devastating to a patient and his or her family. Our medical malpractice lawyers are experienced in successfully pursuing compensation for injuries caused by keyhole or laparoscopic surgeries.

Please contact Wagners at 902 425 7330, toll-free at 1 800 465 8794 or via email at seriousinjury@wagners.co  if you or a loved one has been seriously injured by a keyhole or laparoscopic surgery.

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