Hospital apologises after surgeons put joint implant in the other knee

Wrong knee, right leg: Hospital apologises after bungling surgeons put left joint implant into the other knee

  • Hospital apologises after surgeon puts a left knee joint into a patient’s right knee 
  • The patient had surgery at St Albans City Hospital, Hertfordshire earlier this year
  • The so-called ‘never event’ was revealed this week- and the patient hasn’t had corrective surgery to fix it

A hospital has apologised after a surgeon put a left knee joint into a patient’s right knee.

The unnamed patient was having surgery to replace their right knee joint at St Albans City Hospital in Hertfordshire earlier this year.

But a bungle meant that the implant used was one designed specifically for a left knee.

St Albans City Hospital in Hertfordshire has apologised after a surgeon put a left knee joint into a patient’s right knee [File photo]

The so-called ‘never event’ was revealed this week – and now bosses at the hospital have changed its policy to ensure that both the surgeon and scrub nurse check implants before they are fitted.

The patient has not had corrective surgery, but their progress is being monitored.


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Mike van der Watt, medical director of West Herts Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs the hospital, said: ‘The prostheses for left and right are very similar and therefore it was decided that the prosthesis should remain in situ. We have formally apologised to the patient.’

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