Patient Burns Caused by Electrosurgical Active Electrodes
Failure to Secure Electrosurgical Unit Active-Electrode Pencils Between
Uses Can Lead to Patient Burns
An electrosurgical unit (ESU) is a medical device designed to make precise
surgical incisions using an active-electrode pencil, which is heated via
electric current in order to cauterize tissue and stimulate coagulation
of bodily fluids.
While generally effective in improving surgical precision and preventing
blood loss, ESUs have the potential to cause severe burns to patients,
especially when the active-electrode pencil is not properly holstered.
In order to be used safely, the pencil must be put into a nonconductive
safety holster between uses and have the tip covered. However, if the
pencil is accidentally activated while not properly holstered or while
the tip is not covered, it could start a fire and/or sear a patient’s skin.
Thousands of patients have experienced such injuries. According to a
study conducted by the ECRI Institute, patient burns resulting from unholstered electrosurgical active electrode
pencils are one of the 10 most prevalent medical technology health hazards in 2018.
In Many Cases, Patient Burns Are the Result of Medical Negligence
The costs of purchasing and maintaining such holsters are reportedly minimal,
meaning that there is no significant obstacle preventing doctors and hospitals
from obtaining the appropriate devices and ensuring your safety. However,
some physicians and medical facilities will cut corners and either fail
to purchase and use such holsters or fail to exercise caution when using
ESUs, both of which could result in major patient injuries.
If you’ve suffered a serious, painful burn due to ESU misuse or accidental
activation, you may be entitled to receive compensation for your damages.
Dangerous Medical Device Attorneys Serving Injured Patients in Philadelphia
At Golomb & Honik, P.C., we believe that no act of harmful negligence
should go unpunished and no injured patient should have to pay for the
medical negligence of their doctor or hospital. If you have accidentally
come into contact with an active-electrode pencil during a procedure,
you may have sustained serious burns, scarring, and other injuries. Connect
with a member of our team right away to learn about your legal options
and speak to a
dangerous medical device lawyer in Philadelphia.
Call (215) 278-4449 now to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation.