10 Horrible Medical Mix-Ups

10 Horrible Medical Mix Ups 10 Left and Right In most cases, diabetes can be life changing

But at its very worst it can be debilitating, with nearly 5% of survivors suffering leg amputations That’s roughly 200,000 a year in the US, and the disease accounts for 85% of amputations worldwide While losing a leg can be a horrible last resort to save your life, just imagine if the leg that’s taken wasn’t quite so necessary That was the case in Tampa, Florida in 1995 when Willie King underwent a leg amputation at the hands of a surgeon named Rolando R Sanchez

The patient’s medical consent form correctly stated that King was due to have his right leg removed, but the schedule blackboard said “left” And believe it or not, before this case, surgeons were under no obligation to check the paperwork before the procedure It just so happened that a nurse checked the form midway through surgery, when Sanchez was tearing through King’s ligaments That meant he had to have BOTH legs taken At the very least, King was awarded $1,150,000 in damages, but I’m not sure that quite makes up for the needless loss of a limb

9 Wrong side of the Brain If you were to rank the most important places to be accurate in surgery, the brain would undoubtedly be head and shoulders above the rest Literally Whereas a wonky bodily incision could of course cause complications, even the smallest brain surgery mistake could lead to permanent neurological damage So you should AT LEAST make sure it’s the correct side

The Rhode Island hospital didn’t appear to reach that standard in 2007, since in that single year ALONE, it performed THREE separate brain operations on the wrong side of patients’ brains In one case, a doctor insisted he knew the right side and overruled a nurse, but got it wrong In another, a training doctor cut the wrong side after skipping a checklist Then in the last case, the chief resident started cutting in the wrong place and the nurse didn’t stop him A review of the cases found the mistakes were caused by a strict hierarchy where nurses felt they couldn’t speak up against doctors out of fear of reprisal

But despite the litany of errors, the hospital was fined just $50,000 Sure, that’ll teach ‘em 8 Scammary Glands At this point, the unqualified scam artist cosmetic surgeon is a bit of a trope Something you’d see in a Lifetime channel TV movie

But sometimes, truth is stranger than fiction, and the tale of Reinaldo Silvestre [Ren-al-do Sil-vest-ree] exemplifies that perfectly Back in 1999, amateur Miami bodybuilder Alexander Baez wanted to get a jump in his career, so he decided to invest in pectoral implants Kind of defeats the point but whatever, that’s not the point of the story For the procedure, Baez turned to Silvestre, who turned out to be an unlicensed practitioner pretending to be a surgeon With that in mind, you probably shouldn’t be surprised that Silvestre used the horse tranquiliser and party drug ketamine as an anaesthetic, and a SPATULA as a medical instrument

Bad as that is, it’s not a mix up, it’s just malpractice The real mix up here was that Baez woke up not with the shiny new pecs he wanted, but with two fake breasts Breasts that he had to sport for 12 weeks before they could be removed Where did this guy get his inspiration from, Doctor Nick!? 7 Phantom Cancer When you have a doctor’s appointment, the word that every patient dreads to hear above all is ‘cancer’

Like many other people, Kim Tutt heard that exact word in 2000 when she was told that she had cancer in her jaw With just three to six months to live, she was told that she could extend her prognosis by 4 months by having part of her jaw replaced by her fibula The 34-year-old mother of two agreed to that radical procedure in the desperate hope of spending more time with her kids, as any mum would But several months after the surgery took place, her doctor told her that there had been a mistake due to a cross-contaminated biopsy Long story short, she NEVER HAD CANCER

Because of that careless, and not to mention life-changing error, Tutt had undergone a total of 5 surgeries but was still left disfigured and missing 9 teeth on the right side of her face And while it SHOULD be reassuring to learn that you’re not going to die after all, the knowledge that you were unnecessarily deformed is a bitter pill to swallow 6 Bad trip Now here’s a cautionary tale kids Pharmacists aren’t infallible, so double check your medicine is actually the one you’re prescribed

Otherwise, things might go a little bit awry I’m telling you this because of a story from 2015, when a 12-year-old girl named Riley McDougall was prescribed the antibiotic Azythromycin [Az-ee-thro-my-sin] She got her pills from her local CVS pharmacy, which was all well good, until it turned out that the pills she had actually been given were in fact Ambien – a powerful sleep aid Oh and it also risks causing serious damage to children, hence why it’s almost never prescribed to them After Riley took the mixed up medication, she began wildly hallucinating, and upon reaching the emergency room, she was told it was because of the Sudafed she was taking for her cold

Well, guess what, it wasn’t! And that soon became apparent when the same thing happened after the next dose It wasn’t until the parents described the pills to the pharmacy that they realised that pink pills probably aren’t the same as white pills Hm, strange that 5 Roboverdose Technology is at the heart of everything we do nowadays, and for good reason

Computers are able to process information far more accurately and efficiently than the human brain ever could But the downside to that is that people put an incredible amount of trust in machines that, as of right now, are incapable of demonstrating sense or judgement That’s especially risky when it comes to medical systems, as in the case of Pablo Garcia The teenager, who suffers from NEMO Deficiency Syndrome, visited San Francisco’s Benioff Children’s Hospital for a routine procedure, which involved being given the antibiotic Septra So when it came to getting his prescription, a nurse input his dosage of 120mg on the computer system

BUT, little known to them, the software’s default was to measure according to the patient’s weight That meant that Garcia was prescribed a dosage of 160mg per kilogram, which equates to THIRTY EIGHT pills Needless to say, that’s way over Somehow, the nurse didn’t question the wisdom of the machine and ignored their common sense, which luckily didn’t kill the patient, but things really could have gone much worse 4

Wrong Blood Type Even under ideal circumstances, transplants come with massive risk, but imagine the danger when it’s not even the right blood type That was the case in 2003 for 17-year-old Jessica Santilan, who was suffering from a life-threatening heart and lung disorder The girl was considered somewhat of a miracle after her parents snuck her over the Mexican border to get her treatment that her home country couldn’t provide After hearing the story, her neighbours in North Carolina started a charity to fundraise her surgery But Santilan’s hopes for a better life were dashed when it came to the actual surgery itself

Mid-way through the procedure at the prestigious Duke Hospital, doctors realised that the donor organs were blood type A, when Santilian’s were type O According to an enquiry, 12 staff members had the chance to check the blood type match after the initial mistake but not one did Despite a second corrective transplant, Jessica’s immune system had already turned on her new organs and, tragically, she didn’t survive 3 Stabbing Headache Medical mistakes can come in all shapes and sizes, naturally, since the human body is really bloody complicated

While some are wacky, some are heartbreaking, this one is just unfathomable For four years, Li Fuyan suffered from severe headaches, bad breath and breathing difficulties for no discernable reason So in 2011, he eventually visited Yuxi [Yu-zsi] City people’s hospital in China’s Yunnan Province to get to the bottom of the mystery It turned out that Li’s symptoms traced all the way back to an incident 4 years before where he was stabbed in the head No one at the original visit had realised that the knife had detached itself inside Li’s head

As a result, his ailments were caused by piercing sharp metal corroding inside his noggin But despite the incredible pain over four years, Li decided to self-medicate with injections rather than find out the cause of the problem And there’s me thinking I was squeamish about going to the dentist 2 Surprise Snip I get it, mistakes happen

It’s easy to mix up similar things, like your girlfriend’s favourite flowers with your ex’s, or soy versus almond milk in someone’s decaf moccachino But when your job involves sticking sharp objects in people’s bodies, you’d better be a damn sight more careful Otherwise, something might happen that’s a little bit like… this In Leicester, England in 2018, a patient was scheduled for a routine cystoscopy, where a tiny camera examines inside your bladder But the doctor handling it mixed up the paperwork with another patient undergoing a somewhat different minor surgery

Upon waking up, that patient discovered that he was missing something from his person – his foreskin Yep, the surgeon accidentally mixed up ‘cystoscopy’ with ‘circumcision’ That was just one of a litany of so-called ‘never events’ that NHS hospitals publish each year, which shouldn’t ever happen Feels like that’s a bit of an ironic name considering they happen every year Other cases included a swab left inside a patient and a hip operation on the wrong side

Those are pretty bad, but I’d take either over a surprise snip any day 1 Penis poop Okay, I’m going to warn you right now This did happen Yes, it sounds like an episode of South Park, but it IS real and it IS gross

Anyway, on with the entry For those of you who aren’t aware, colostomies are a pretty routine surgical procedure to divert the colon through a hole in the stomach – the idea being to help the rectum heal or just permanently bypass a damaged bottom half Back in 2006, a man named Joseph Swain underwent a pretty usual colostomy at Kent General hospital in Wilmington Delaware to treat an abscess in his abdomen No problem there But when it came time to conduct the reverse colostomy, the surgeons didn’t exactly hit their mark

Instead of reattaching the colon to the rectum, they instead attached it to Mr Swain’s bladder The direct consequence was that the patient began discharging liquified fecal matter through his urethra In layman’s terms, HE PEED POOP As a result, Swain sued on account of the follow-up surgeries needed, the pain inflicted and the effects on his marriage

I REALLY hope he got a lot for that

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