A man had a pair of eight inch long forceps left inside his body after medical staff made an error during surgery.
The unnamed man underwent the surgical procedure on his appendix at a hospital in Kent. It is being reported that East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust announced this week that an investigation has been started into the incident.
The forceps were only discovered after the man underwent a routine check-up x-ray weeks after the procedure. After the forceps were discovered, he had to undergo another emergency operation to have them removed.
A spokesperson for East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust told the Daily Mail that such events were very rare. They went on to state that only one such event had happened at the Trust in three years despite 90,000 operations taking place.
The Department of Health however, describes the leaving of medical implements inside a person as a “never event”. This means that certain procedures must be followed by medical staff to ensure that it never happens. These measures should include counting the number of tools before and after an operation, and performing an immediate x-ray if the numbers do not tally.
The NHS Litigation Authority states that during the reporting period between 2010 and 2011, 8,655 claims were made against the NHS. £863 million was paid out in medical negligence compensation during the same period.