Wrong-Site Surgeries

I once told a client who was going in for surgery to write a note with a black marker pen on his good knee that said “NOT THIS ONE.” That is some protection against the doctor getting the X-ray reversed and operating on the wrong knee. Wrong site surgery is rare but it does happen.

See Operating Room Briefings and Wrong-Site Surgery Journal of the American College of Surgeons, Volume 204, Issue 2, Pages 236-243 M. Makary, A. Mukherjee, J. Sexton, D. Syin, E. Goodrich, E. Hartmann, L. Rowen, D. Behrens, M. Marohn, P. Pronovost

Be sure to ask the surgeon before the surgery to confirm what is being operated on so that you or a loved one doesn’t suffer such a tragic mistake.