Case #1044: Surgical Errors

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On December 27, the Plaintiff’s Decedent, a 76 year old woman, underwent excision for a right lung mass at the Defendant Hospital. Following surgery, she was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit where she demonstrated decreasing respiratory rates at every check by the nursing staff. The Plaintiffs alleged that had the Defendant Hospital’s personnel performed surgery in accordance with the standards of care, all sutures utilized would have been appropriately placed and inspected such to prevent any significant postoperative bleeding. Tragically, the sutures were not appropriate and there was significant postoperative bleeding.

The Plaintiffs also alleged that Hospital personnel failed to establish a postoperative chest tube in an appropriate fashion and, failed to monitor the postoperative chest tube drainage and/or the patient. As a result, the Defendant’s personnel negligently failed to timely diagnose significant postoperative bleeding. Had that occurred as required by the standards of care, the surgeons would have provided timely intervention to stem the bleeding. However, as the direct and proximate result of Hospital personnel’s ongoing negligence, the Plaintiff’s Decedent bled to death in the Intensive Care Unit of the Defendant Hospital. The Plaintiff’s Decedent was survived by five adult children.