Sep
2014

Massive hemorrhage: a report from the Anesthesia Closed Claims Project.

Dutton RP, Lee LA, Stephens LS, Posner KL, Davies JM, Domino KB
Anesthesiology 2014;121:450-458.
NATA Rating :
Review by : P. Johansson
NATA Review

Dutton and colleagues reviewed 3,211 closed surgical or obstetric anaesthesia malpractice claims related to haemorrhage between 1995 and 2011, and found that two areas (obstetrics and spinal surgery) were overrepresented. Furthermore, they found that common features of many cases were lack of timely diagnosis, timely transfusion, and reoperation, often reflecting poor team communication.

They conclude that haemorrhage is a rare but serious cause of anaesthesia malpractice claims. Understanding which patients are at risk can aid in patient referral decisions, design of institutional systems for responding to haemorrhage, and education of surgeons, obstetricians and anaesthesiologists.

– Pär Johansson

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