Victim of Surgeon’s Wrongful Cutting and Failure to Timely Treat Awarded $1M by Jury

Gentry Locke for the Plaintiff

City of Martinsville Court

Our client needed her gallbladder out and went to a general surgeon. A rule with respect to general surgery is that a surgeon cannot clip and cut any anatomy unless the surgeon is positive about the anatomy that he/she is clipping and cutting. There is a procedure known as the “critical view of safety” that, if used appropriately, positively identifies the anatomy that should be clipped and cut while removing a gallbladder. While the general surgeon was removing our client’s gallbladder, she was unsure of the anatomy and did not utilize the “critical view of safety”. As a result of the surgeon’s choices, she clipped and cut the wrong anatomy causing our client to suffer a bile leak in her abdomen. In addition, the general surgeon did not timely diagnose or treat the bile leak so our client had bile leaking into her belly for several days. Eventually, the general surgeon diagnosed our client’s bile leak and our client had to be transported to a level one trauma center due to her critical condition.

The general surgeon’s insurance company, the Doctors’ Company, refused to accept responsibility for the general surgeon’s malpractice. Therefore, our client was forced to proceed to Court. The Court decided that our client’s case had merit to proceed to a jury. A jury of seven persons in the City of Martinsville heard four days of evidence and unanimously found in favor of our client, awarding compensation of $1 million.

Status of the case:

The jury awarded our client compensation of $1 million.

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