Can I Sue a Surgeon for Causing Nerve Damage? By John Macfarlane on September 06, 2023

two surgeons operatingEvery surgical procedure carries some risk but when medical professionals are negligent, it can lead to serious injuries including nerve damage. A medical malpractice lawyer can help those who have been injured by a doctor’s negligence recover compensation for their injuries and other damages.  

Nerve damage is a known risk for many surgical procedures so when it does happen, injured parties may ask “can I sue a surgeon for causing nerve damage?” The Utah and Salt Lake City attorneys of Younker Hyde Macfarlane would like to take a moment to answer this question and discuss options for seeking compensation for nerve damage. 

About Nerves and Nerve Damage

Nerves run throughout the body and are essential for sending signals back and forth between the body and brain. When one or more nerves are injured and damaged, it can break the communication between the brain and the areas of the body surrounding the nerve. Depending on the type of nerve damaged, this can result in problems such as numbness, weakness, pain, or loss of function.

There are several ways nerve damage can occur. Some of the most common causes include repetitive movement, certain medical conditions, accidents, or surgical procedures. 

What Causes Nerve Damage During Surgery?

Nerves are present throughout the body. Surgeons must work precisely and carefully to avoid injuring nerves during a procedure but sometimes mistakes or errors occur and a nerve will be damaged. Some causes of nerve damage during surgery include:

  • Severed or injured nerve - It’s common for surgeons to operate close to nerves. Sometimes this results in severing or injuring a nerve. 
  • Inflammation - In some cases, a nerve may be touched by medical instruments during surgery. Though the nerve may not be cut, it may become inflamed. 
  • Error in administering anesthesia - Nerves can be damaged as a result of an error being made when administering anesthesia. Damage can happen if the syringe used to administer local anesthesia is placed into a nerve. Regional anesthesia, like an epidural, is administered into the spine. If not done properly, it can damage the nerves in the spinal column.  

When Is Nerve Damage Medical Malpractice?

Nerve damage may be considered medical malpractice if the injury was a result of the negligence of a surgeon. Surgeons are expected to meet a certain standard of care when operating on patients. When a surgeon operates carelessly and makes a mistake that a reasonable surgeon would not make, there may be grounds for a medical malpractice lawsuit. 

Seeking Compensation Through a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit

Surgeons can be sued for medical malpractice if their negligence caused nerve damage and harmed the patient. 

When pursuing a medical malpractice lawsuit for nerve damage, it must be established that the surgeon was negligent and failed to meet a certain standard of care and that the patient was harmed as a result of the negligence. 

A medical malpractice attorney can gather evidence to support medical malpractice claims and help victims recover compensation such as: 

  • Medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of future income
  • Pain and suffering

Contact Younker Hyde Macfarlane

If you have suffered nerve damage after a surgical procedure, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. To discuss the details of your case, we invite you to schedule a consultation with the Utah attorneys of Younker Hyde Macfarlane.

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Younker Hyde Macfarlane, PLLC

Younker Hyde Macfarlane, PLLC

At Younker Hyde Macfarlane, PLLC, our attorneys have decades of combined experience in complex cases. We represent clients in all types of personal injury cases, with a special focus on medical malpractice claims. Our firm is associated with the following professional organizations:

  • Utah Bar Association
  • American Bar Association
  • Salt Lake County Bar Association
  • American Trial Lawyers Association

To schedule an appointment, please contact us online or call (801) 335-6467.

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