10:00 AM PDT, May 22, 2021
An 82-year-old Austrian man was due to have his left leg amputated above the knee this week, but due to “human error,” his right leg was amputated instead. According to CNN, a hospital worker at the Freistadt Clinic, located near Austria’s border with the Czech Republic, mistakenly put a preoperative mark on the wrong leg.
A statement from the clinic reads, “It was (Thursday) morning, in the course of the standard wound dressing change, that the tragic mistake, caused by human error, was discovered. A disastrous combination of circumstances led to the patient’s right leg being amputated instead of his left.”
“We would also like to affirm that we will be doing everything to unravel the case, to investigate all internal processes, and critically analyze them. Any necessary steps will immediately be taken.”
CNN adds that the elderly man suffered from numerous medical conditions that affected both legs. And following the hospital’s mistake, the man still needed to have the other leg removed.
They state, “The surgeon involved is not currently on duty, at her own request.”
Since the accident, the patient’s family has been informed, and details of the occurrence were sent to the region’s public prosecutors. The hospital has also offered the family psychological support.