Posted on 17 Comments

Not This Leg! How To Ensure The Correct Body Part Is Operated On

Photo by National Cancer Institute on Unsplash

A Story Told By Our Pediatrics Professor

Hello my WP family! How is everyone coping? Have you had your vaccines? How do you feel? Are you out and about?

Today’s post is inspired by Calmkate’s response to her story about where one may prefer to die.

So back during my nursing school days, one of my professors told us this story.

Her mother was to have surgery on her leg and had surrendered herself to the mercy of the hospital the previous evening. Her surgery would take place very early the following morning.

My Professor said as she laid in bed that evening a horrific thought crossed her mind.

What if the surgeons operated on the wrong leg? 

She began remembering all the stories of surgical mistakes she had ever heard. Stories of surgeries on the body part that was normal and leaving the diseased one intact.

So with the horrors fresh in her mind, she got out of bed and drove to the hospital to find her mother in bed. She took the marker we use in the hospital to write on the skin (it takes days to come off), and she wrote: “NOT THIS LEG”!

She stated she was not about to let them operate on the good leg.

We all had a nervous laugh about it at the time, but in reality, these things can and do happen. Processes are in place to prevent mistakes, but since to err is human … we can help them to ensure they operate on the “right” body part.

So yes, make a mark and let them know … “Not this leg”!

Be safe and be blessed!

17 thoughts on “Not This Leg! How To Ensure The Correct Body Part Is Operated On

  1. Wrong-Site, Wrong-Procedure, and Wrong-Patient Surgery but right post!

  2. Great story, Pene! It’s amazing how often we must follow up behind people in all walks of life. It seems that lack of follow-through is common! <3

    Hope all is well with you. I just got my first shot and am due for the second on the 29th. Yay!

    1. I have had lots of operations in my short life time. I am one of the lucky ones and never had the wrong anything operated on. God was always with me to ensure things went smoothly. Calmkate has some great stories and I am glad pene you shared this with us. It brought smiles to my face. Have a wonderful weekend Pene and all !

    2. It’s better safe than sorry. Proper follow-up prevents wrong surgery 😂

  3. Amazing story, Pene.
    I am one of those who loves to double-check to ensure that things are done the right way. It’s better safe than sorry.

    I was once operated on for something that didn’t go wrong. I hope to share the story in my next book.

    By the way, I haven’t gotten the vaccine yet. I am back home after doing my side gig.

    I hope you are having a great weekend.

    1. Oh my, I cannot wait for that book to hear your story.

  4. Thanks, Pene.
    That daughter was really looking out for her mother…⚘🤗

    1. Yes she was.

  5. Great story Pene

  6. Haha. Better safe than sorry yeah. 😂

  7. This made me laugh! My mom used to always tell us that if she ever had to have surgery we needed to write on her to let them know what she was actually having surgery for! We all laughed about it. But then you realize that it does happen that people get the wrong surgery done sometimes. Scary!

    1. Your mom is a wise woman.

  8. This story is funny but serious at the same time because it does happen at times. Have a blessed week. 🙂

    1. Stay well my sister.

  9. Great tip Pene. Albeit scary but even surgeons are human and capable of mistakes ❤️

  10. Great point here! Scary to think doctors may take the wrong thing. Glad I read this before my surgery, I was nervous enough! LOL

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