Patients Burned by Electrosurgical Active Electrode Pencils

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 Legal, 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.