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Medical Verdicts

Woman develops necrotizing fasciitis after tubal ligation

November 2002 · Vol. 14, No. 11
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<court>Cook County (Ill) Circuit Court</court>

A 49-year-old woman underwent a tubal ligation procedure. During the surgery, the patient’s bladder was punctured, resulting in an infection in her abdomen. Soon thereafter, she developed necrotizing fasciitis. Despite the removal of much of her external genitalia and treatments to stop the spread of infection, the woman died 9 days after the initial surgery.

In suing, the family of the patient claimed that the doctors ignored signs of the bacterial infection for 4 days. They further argued that since a 49-year-old woman has less than a 1% chance of becoming pregnant, the tubal ligation should never have been performed.

The doctors denied negligence and claimed that a correct diagnosis was made.

  • The jury awarded the family $6.5 million.

The cases presented here were compiled by Lewis L. Laska, editor of Medical Malpractice Verdicts, Settlements & Experts. While there are instances when the available information is incomplete, these cases represent the types of clinical situations that typically result in litigation.

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