Understanding Intubation Errors

Posted By Paulson Coletti Trial Attorneys PC || 18-Nov-2015

When emergencies arise and paramedics are called upon for medical assistance, they must make some crucial decisions in the field. Depending on the severity of the situation and the condition that an injured individual is in, there are various actions that may be taken to help remedy any potential dangers. Paramedics are tasked on making the difficult, quick decisions that could be the difference between life and death. Unfortunately, this timeline can often lead to mistakes, especially in matters where intubation is necessary. This is also true for doctors and other medical professionals who have to perform this procedure.

What is Intubation?

Intubation is when a flexible plastic tube is inserted through the mouth and down into the trachea, the airway from the mouth down into the lungs. This allows for an open passageway for oxygen to pass through freely, ventilating the passage way to the lungs. Oftentimes, the tubes used during intubation may be hooked up to a ventilator machine to help the patient breath when they are unable to do so by themselves and their respiratory functions are not adequate enough to meet their needs.

The tube for intubation is inserted through the mouth while also using a laryngoscope. This helps to allow the doctor or paramedic to see the highest part of the trachea and hold the tongue out of the way.

Errors that May Occur

One of the more common errors that can occur during intubation is the insertion of the tube into the esophagus rather than the trachea. This may cause the patient to receive inadequate respirations and cardiac arrest, brain damage, and even death can occur. Another potential error is when the tube is placed too deep and only one lung is ventilated. This can cause inadequate respiration as well as pneumothorax. Finally, it is possible to damage the mouth, the teeth, the soft tissues, and the vocal cords if intubation is done incorrectly.

Possible Legal Action

If you or a loved one was harmed due to an intubation error, it is important to seek legal counsel in order to help you file the necessary claim. Whether the injury was caused by a paramedic, a doctor, or any other medical professional, you should be able to take the necessary steps to hold the liable party accountable for their actions. At Paulson Coletti, our Portland personal injury attorneys understand medical malpractice claims and how to bring them to light. We know the many causes for intubation errors and we work hard to prove negligence in your matter.

Intubation errors can be caused by:

  • Untrained medical professionals
  • Excessive force
  • Negligence
  • Distractions during the procedure

Our team works hard to prove that your injury was a direct result from the intubation error. We build a case designed to seek the compensation you need to cover medical expenses and lost wages. If you or someone you love has suffered as a result of intubation error, reach out to our team today. We offer free case evaluations.

Categories: Medical Malpractice