The Daily

Iatrogenic Injuries

Numerous errors and medicolegal aspects have been identified in diagnosing and treating cardiac tamponade associated with cardiac-related procedures such as valve replacement surgeries, cardiac pacemaker implantation, pericardiocentesis, and other non-cardiac related procedures such as peri-hiatal surgeries. Patients taking anticoagulants or anticancer medications are especially susceptible to developing cardiac tamponade when undergoing surgical procedures, raising the question of preoperative screening to avoid errors. Misdiagnosis, treatment delay or failure to deliver the utmost quality of treatment, lack of complication screening and follow-ups for those at risk, surgeons rushing to complete cases, burnout, and other human factors are predispositions to the development of cardiac tamponade. Fortunately, most of these errors occurring within healthcare settings are avoidable and must be prevented for eliminating any risks to reduce the incidence and mortality of cardiac tamponade cases resulting from iatrogenic etiology. It is an intricate condition where precision and caution are crucial.

In medicine, the word “iatrogenic” usually describes an unnecessary injury caused by a healthcare provider. As typically used, it refers to a direct injury caused by your doctor – often during surgery. These injuries can include perforations, and nicks that result in fistula, bleeding, and other trauma to tissue and organs.

One of the most serious iatrogenic injuries is cardiac tamponade, because it can dramatically and suddenly cause disruptions in heart rate.

Here is a peer-reviewed study on the iatrogenic causes of cardiac tamponade.

Iatrogenic Causes of Cardiac Tamponade Resulting From Surgical Procedures: An Overview