When a routine medical procedure turns into a life-threatening situation, the effects can be devastating. That was the case for a 33-year-old woman who is at the center of a multimillion-dollar medical malpractice trial.
The woman underwent a gynecological procedure (removal of an ectopic pregnancy) at Winthrop University Hospital in 2009, according to the New York Daily News. It’s alleged the surgeon punctured her colon, which caused her to develop sepsis (bloodstream infection) and gangrene. As a result, she lost most of her hearing and had both legs amputated. The hospital claims there was no negligence in her surgery or care.
Pursuing a Medical Malpractice Claim When a Surgical Mistake Results in Serious Harm
It’s not uncommon for mistakes to happen during surgery. Thankfully, most of them don’t result in consequences as severe as those in this case. Accidentally puncturing an internal organ is just one type of mistake that can happen when undergoing a surgical procedure.
Other examples include operating on the wrong patient, wrong part of the body or leaving surgical instruments (sponges, metal tools, needles, etc.) inside a patient. These are circumstances in which it would be hard to argue the surgeon or surgical staff wasn’t negligent.
When a patient suffers serious physical and emotional harm, he or she may be owed compensation through a medical malpractice claim. An attorney would need to investigate the matter to uncover how the mistake happened and who was liable. In some cases, not only may the surgeon be responsible, but also the hospital.
Some of the damages that potentially could be recovered include the additional medical costs associated with the mistake, such as treating an infection or performing another operation. The time missed from work while recovering or expected earnings after the patient suffered disabling injuries also could be included. Other forms of compensation could address pain and suffering, mental anguish, and reduced quality of life.
Gacovino, Lake & Associates helps injured patients determine the extent of their damages and establish a health care provider’s liability. If a doctor caused you or a loved one harm, call us today – (800) 246-4878.