The number of such cases has come down in Tamil Nadu.

Every year two doctors suspended for leaving things inside patients says TN Medical councilImage for representation/
news Thursday, April 07, 2016 - 09:10

The Tamil Nadu Medical Council claims that every year, at least, two doctors are suspended for leaving sponges, equipment or other things after surgery, according to Times of India.

Moreover, the association of Surgeons of India stated that at least 5000 surgeons in the country have left things inside the patient at least once during surgeries.

Gurgaon-based president of the Association of Surgeons of India Dr. Suresh Vasistha, told TOI, “In some cases, the team catches it before closing the patient, sometimes not.”

In one of the cases, Chennai-based gynecologist D Rajasekar left cotton behind in the body during a caesarean. In India, such cases do not come to light as there are no statistics as there is no rule to report such mistakes in the system.

The number of such cases has come down in Tamil Nadu, Mahendrakumar Bajpai, an advocate in the Supreme Court told TOI.

The Association of Surgeons of India has organized various medical education programmes on the topic ‘safety in surgery’. The organization has asked the doctors to be careful and to find missing things like sponges by doing re-counts and not closing the patient till it is found.

Dr. Vashishta said that surgeons use sponges and gauzes with radiopaque markers. It can help the team to find the sponges easily. “If we use a mobile X-ray machine to scan the patient, the sponge with the radiopaque marker will show up in the X-ray,“ Dr. Vasistha told TOI.

He said that radio-frequency tags and bar codes need to be brought into Indian hospitals which will make finding things inside a patient’s body easier.

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