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Medical Verdicts

Artery, vein, bowel lacerations complicate oophorectomy

July 2003 · Vol. 15, No. 7
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<court>Porter County (Ill) Superior Court</court>

A 25-year-old woman presented to a hospital for removal of an ovary. During the procedure, the physician had difficulty grasping the ovary and utilized a trocar. The instrument’s placement resulted in laceration of the patient’s iliac artery, vein, and bowel.

Following surgery, the patient remained in the hospital for 12 days, 3 days of which were spent on life support. Postoperatively, the patient developed clotting and continues to take blood-thinning medication.

In suing, the woman claimed that the doctor did not position himself at a proper angle to perform the surgery and failed to avoid blood vessels.

The doctor argued that the patient’s injury was due to a faulty trocar, noting that the shield fell off during surgery.

  • The jury awarded the plaintiff $620,000.

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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Vaginal hysterectomy 
with basic instrumentation