Routine Hernia Operation Leaves Woman Permanently Brain Damaged

Fox News reported this week on a new medical malpractice lawsuit filed by a family alleging that their senior loved one suffered a serious brain injury as a result of a surgical error. Documents filed with the court initiating the suit allege that the woman was left in a vegetative state as a result of the series of mistakes.

The Case
According to the report, the 69-year old woman’s family visited a hospital in The Bronx for what was supposed to be a relatively routine hernia surgery. Yet, the family claims the woman’s condition deteriorated quickly after the surgery. In particular, the family claims that the doctors botched an incision to begin the procedure. The incision problems caused internal bleeding which led to an infection. Sadly, the infection was not properly treated, the family claims, resulting in even more problems.

The woman developed a “giant hematoma” which allegedly had a terrible odor following a draining. During this time the woman had terrible energy problems and often did not have the strength to keep her head up. She did not eat much throughout this period. Yet, despite the very clear problems, the woman’s family claims that she received very little treatment. The family’s medical malpractice attorney explained that “It was almost a comedy of errors. This is a case of inept medical care from start to finish.”

The documents filed with the court explain that it was weeks before the woman had a second surgery in an attempt to correct the subsequent problems. Yet, by that time she had a range of other problems, one of which included a “Stage 4” bedsore that went down to the bone. Bed sores are skin and tissue breakdowns caused by inadequate medical caregiving. When immobile residents are not repositioned or given proper nutrition or hydration, they can develop these sores. The sores are painful and can lead to severe complications.

All told the woman suffered a serious brain injury as a result of the incision problems and infection. It has been nine months since the original surgery, and her family is unsure if she will ever make it home. The woman is now confined to a wheelchair in a nursing home. As a result of her brain injury the woman rarely has her eyes open.

Brain Injury As Result of Medical Malpractice
Brain injuries often occur as a result of medical errors. There are many underlying causes, because damage to the brain can spring up following many different incidents. For a brain injury caused by a medial error to lead to liability, the damage does not have to happen immediately. As this case indicates, when a medical mistake is made, the caregivers responsible for the error can be held liable for all of the subsequent harm that follows from there error. There are some unique rules in negligence suits regarding harm that is not “foreseeable” as a result of a negligent act. However, those rules are virtually never applicable in cases where a medial patient faces complications from an initial medical error. As always it is vital to visit with legal professionals to learn how the law might apply in your specific case.

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