Our top-rated Michigan medical malpractice attorneys represent patients who suffer bowel perforations during surgery. These injuries can lead to serious injuries and even death.
What is a Perforated Bowel?
A perforated bowel means that the bowel was torn or cut. This can be catastrophic, even life-threatening. When a bowel is cut, its contents spill into the patient’s abdomen or abdominal lining (peritoneum). The content contains bacteria that can damage the surrounding organs and tissue.
As a result, a patient may suffer from infection or disease such as sepsis, as well as other serious problems, such as the requirement for additional surgery or the need to wear a colostomy bag. If not timely diagnosed or treated, it can result in death.
Common Surgeries for Bowel Perforations
Some of the most common abdominal surgeries where a surgeon perforates the bowel include:
- Gallbladder surgery
- Gastric bypass surgery
- EGD (Esophagogastroduodenoscopy)
- Laparoscopic procedures
Perforated Bowels during Colonoscopy Procedures
Bowel perforation is a recognized complication of a colonoscopy. However, it must be recognized quickly and surgically treated before the patient suffers serious harm.
Our attorneys have settled several lawsuits against doctors for failing to recognize the injury during the procedure. In one case, the patient died just one day after having a routine colonoscopy.
Is it Medical Negligence to Perforate a Bowel during Surgery?
Bowel perforation can occur during surgery without negligence. It is often a risk of most abdominal procedures. However, there are occasions when it is due to medical malpractice.
Most lawsuits for bowel perforations are filed because the medical staff failed to identify the injury during the procedure. Or, the staff did not recognize the symptoms in the hours or days after the surgery. Generally speaking, the earlier a perforation is repaired, the better outcome for a patient.
As such, when a patient is discharged home or lays sick in the hospital with an untreated perforated bowel, there is often a basis to sue the surgeon, nursing staff, and hospital for malpractice.
Treating a Perforated Bowel
Whether the bowel was perforated during surgery or just a natural occurrence, it must be promptly diagnosed and treated by physicians. Diagnosis is made by clinical exam and tests and must be confirmed by a radiology study, like an X-ray or CT scan. Many times, the surgeon recognizes an injury to the bowel during the procedure and can promptly repair it.
Surgery is the method to repair a bowel perforation. The amount of time that the perforation was left open and the severity of the infection usually determine the outcome for the patient. Treatment with medications to control the infection is also key in determining the recovery for the patient.
Can I File a Perforated Bowel Lawsuit?
To file a perforated bowel lawsuit, it must be proven that the injury was caused by medical negligence or the delay in treating the injury. For either scenario, the result must be serious harm or death.
The determination of whether you can file a lawsuit is made by a careful review of the medical records and radiology films. Our attorneys and paralegals will review your entire chart and discuss your case with a board-certified surgeon. If your case has merit, we will file a medical malpractice lawsuit for you.
Compensation in Bowel Perforation Cases
Bowel perforation lawsuits often result in substantial compensation payouts. Every case is judged strictly on the harm caused to the particular patient. We will evaluate your case and determine the proper amount to compensate you for your losses.
Settlements in surgery malpractice cases include compensation for pain and suffering, disability, mental anguish, and other psychological damages. If a patient requires additional surgeries and hospitalization due to the failure to treat a perforated bowel, the case will likely result in a high settlement amount.
Claims are also made for medical bills and lost income. We will get all of your medical bills and contact your health insurer to find out what was charged and paid for your treatment. Those amounts will be demanded as part of the settlement payment.
In cases involving a patient’s death, the surviving family members can file a wrongful death lawsuit. These cases request damages for the pain and suffering of the loved one prior to the death. They also demand compensation for the loss of companionship by the family members, as well as funeral expenses and loss of earnings.
Examples of Michigan Bowel Perforation Settlements & Verdicts
- $3,535,000 jury verdict for a woman who suffered a small bowel perforation during an elective hysterectomy that went undiagnosed and caused serious medical complications.
- $2,200,000 settlement for the failure of doctors and the hospital to properly treat acute diverticulitis which resulted in the death of a 48-year-old married man.
- $1,072,000 jury verdict in a medical malpractice lawsuit for a patient death that was caused by sepsis as a result of a perforated colon.
- $670,960 jury verdict against a surgeon and hospital for the failure to diagnose an ischemic bowel resulting in an obstruction which perforated the bowel and led to overwhelming sepsis and death.
- $650,000 wrongful death settlement for the family of a woman who died from peritonitis after a perforated colon. The condition was misdiagnosed and caused her death
Contact Our Medical Malpractice Attorneys
If you or your loved one has suffered a perforated bowel during surgery, contact our experienced attorneys today to discuss your case. We will give you free legal advice and determine if you have a case. Our award-winning attorneys are eager to help you right now.
There are absolutely no legal fees unless you receive a settlement. We pay all of the case expenses.
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