Oophorectomy due to hemorrhage leads to surgical menopause
<court>Los Angeles County (Calif) Superior Court</court>
After 3 years of conservative treatment for recurring intense pain stemming from fibroids, a 41-year-old woman underwent a laparoscopic-assisted vaginal hysterectomy.
Twelve hours after surgery, the woman began to hemorrhage. A laparotomy identified the woman’s right ovary as the source of the bleeding. An oophorectomy was performed.
The plaintiff argued that her right ovary was improperly removed, leading to surgical menopause. She also alleged that the hysterectomy itself was not clinically indicated.
The defendant physician not only claimed the hysterectomy was indicated given the woman’s history, but also noted that the patient specifically requested the procedure. Further, the Ob/Gyn maintained that the oophorectomy was properly performed, and that the remaining ovary should have supplied adequate hormones.
- The jury returned a defense verdict.
The cases in this column are selected by the editors of OBG Management from Medical Malpractice Verdicts, Settlements & Experts, with permission of the editor, Lewis Laska, of Nashville, Tenn. (www.verdictslaska.com) While there are instances when the available information is incomplete, these cases represent the types of clinical situations that typically result in litigation.