Eight-inch surgical tool left in man's abdomen

Most patients trust that careless mistakes will not be made by their medical providers while they are on the surgical table. Happily, patients in Pittsburgh are more fortunate in this regards than certain other areas in the nation. Just recently, a surgical error that took place in a southern state may have resulted in ongoing health problems for the patient.

The patient in question underwent surgery for stomach cancer back in 2010. Almost immediately after the surgery was performed he experienced severe abdominal pain and he began running a fever. X-rays and scans of the stomach then revealed that a retractor measuring 8 inches long and 2 inches wide was left in the man’s abdomen after the surgery had been performed.

It’s not difficult to figure out why the patient has suffered so many ailments and hardships since this surgery took place. The presence of the retractor alone would have caused various health problems, but the circumstances were exasperated as the retractor also caused a perforation in the duodenum. This perforation has likely led to abscesses and various infections. The patient was also forced to undergo an additional surgical procedure to have the retractor removed.

Medical malpractice lawsuits are brought about by clients and their attorneys especially in circumstances where unnecessary pain and suffering has to be endured due to the negligence of a trained physician. We undergo surgery to get better. Even a minor mistake during a surgical procedure can lead to extreme medical complications.

Routine surgical safety precautions such as an inventory of all surgical materials would prevent a great deal of medical mistakes from occurring at all. No patient should be forced to go under the knife twice because of such mistakes.

Source: KWTX, “Man Sues Scott & White Over Surgical Glitch,” April 2, 2012