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University of Baltimore Law Review

Abstract

Statistics regarding surgical medical malpractice are staggering. The annual cost of the medical malpractice liability system has been estimated to be $55.6 billion-2.4% of the total healthcare system.' The median award for plaintiffs in actions involving spinal cords is $2.9 million, and the median value for settlements is $1.45 million. A neurosurgeon will spend approximately eleven years of his or her career with outstanding malpractice claims.

Intraoperative neuromonitoring (IOM), also known as surgical neurophysiology, is hardly a novel medical technology. In fact, it has been used in the operating room for over half a century. IOM provides real-time monitoring of a patient's nervous system during surgeries that involve the brain, spinal cord, or peripheral nervous system. This allows the surgeon to determine what, if any, actions need to be taken to reduce the risk of permanent neurological injuries to the patient after the surgery.

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