Can I sue if my DR failed to complete my surgery? 25 Answers as of July 02, 2013

I recently had stomach surgery to fix 2 hernias. I was told by the Dr that the surgery went well. 3 days later I was sent to the ER for pain beneath one incision. Had a Ct and the ER Dr informed me that I had 2 problems. The tack used was through my abdominal muscle and was tearing and the 2nd problem was that I still had the lower hernia. He went to look at my lower incision and I informed him that there was never lower incision. My Surgion used one piece of mesh to cover 2 hernias and forgot to tack the bottom. I have since had a mesh infection, and an infarcted omentum, and a gallbladder attack from NPO while in hospital. I need now 2 more surgeries, one to fix the hernia and one to remove gallbladder.

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Law Office of Jared Altman
Law Office of Jared Altman | Jared Altman
Sounds like you may have a case. But, for a medical malpractice case to be worth pursuing there must be substantial permanent injuries. These kinds of cases are expensive and labor intensive. Only a severe injury warrants the costs, commitment and risk of loss that an attorney must assume.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 1/5/2012
McKell Christiansen
McKell Christiansen | Michael McKell
Yes you can sue the surgeon. I would recommend finding a good medical malpractice attorney in your area. Medical malpractice cases are very difficult to win as you bear the burden of proof which means you will have to hire experts to prove your case. Find a good attorney and move forward.
Answer Applies to: Utah
Replied: 1/5/2012
David F. Stoddard
David F. Stoddard | David F. Stoddard
You may have a suit. It depends on whether the surgeon's performance was negligent, and whether you have suffered significant damages as a result. To successfully sue for malpractice, you need three things: 1. Evidence that the doctor/nurse deviated from acceptable standards of due care, either by act or omission. This is also referred to as negligence. A bad outcome, in of itself, is not evidence of negligence. You need a doctor to testify that the doctor/nurse was negligent. 2. Evidence that the negligence cause some harm. 3. Significant damages. If the negligence caused minor damages, it would not be economically feasible to bring a ,malpractice case, because the cost in expert witness fees would exceed your damages. I know some malpractice attorneys who require at least $500,000 in medical bills or lost wages caused by the negligence before they will consider the case. You will need a medical opinion as to whether the doctor was negligent, and as to whether the negligence caused the problems you have had since the original surgery. Furthermore, if the problems can be fixed, then your damages may not be significant enough to justify a suit.
Answer Applies to: South Carolina
Replied: 1/5/2012
Law Office of William L Spern | William Spern
Yes you can if you can establish that the Dr breached the standard of care of a Dr who would perform such surgeries. The bigger problem may be your damages which appear minimal. In Michigan, pain & suffering is limited by statute. Most malpractice attorney don't take a minimal damage case because of the the cost to work it up. Permanent loss of income or lifetime medical expenses may make your case more attractive. Contact an attorney who specializes in medical malpractice cases.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 1/5/2012
Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A.
Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A. | Paul L. Whitfield
I am an expert on stomach surgery (been there, done that, got the T shirt)you have had a rough time but what you did not say in your brief memo is whether there is malpractice here. If you find a doctor (surgeon) who is willing to say there is malpractice here and is willing to testify for you, then you have the start of a case. Understand however that the original doctor will likely say you just had a bad result and he will likely get 3 or 4 of his golfing buddies to testify for him.
Answer Applies to: North Carolina
Replied: 1/5/2012
    Lapin Law Offices
    Lapin Law Offices | Jeffrey Lapin
    You can sue a doctor for failing to complete a surgery if the surgeon committed "medical malpractice" in his/her failure to complete. However, just because a person had complications following surgery does not mean the surgeon did anything wrong. There are known complications for all surgeries.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 1/4/2012
    Law Firm of Martin & Wallentine
    Law Firm of Martin & Wallentine | Richard Martin
    If your doctor fell below the applicable standard of care, he was negligent in performing your operation. If that negligence caused your current medical problems, then you may have a claim for medical malpractice. Consult a personal injury lawyer immediately to evaluate your case.
    Answer Applies to: Kansas
    Replied: 1/4/2012
    Andrew T. Velonis, P.C.
    Andrew T. Velonis, P.C. | Andrew Velonis
    This sounds like it should be looked into. Get all of your medical records and contact an attorney in your area who practices in the area of Medical Malpractice. Your situation is too complicated to resolve in this format.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 1/4/2012
    Downriver Injury and Auto Law | Michael Heilmann
    Surgery is different than fixing a car. Sometimes a surgery is not successful and has to be redone. The gallbladder has nothing to do with the hernia so I am not sure why you blame the surgeon for that. Medical malpractice cases require a clear deviation from accepted standards of care. There is nothing in your note to indicate that the doctor was negligent. Good Luck.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 1/4/2012
    Ford, Howard & Cornett, P.C. | Bradley Cornett
    You may have a valid medical malpractice claim. You will need another qualified doctor (i.e., board certified surgeon) to testify that your surgeon violated the standard of care.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 1/4/2012
    The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
    The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr. | Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
    Medical mal cases are usualy very difficult. This is really not the best forum to get an answer to your question. Strongly sugges that you contact a mal practice attorney [cinsultations are usually free] and get his her opinion. Will also require that a doctor other than yours review your files and agree that there was care less than the standard. That opinion will probably not be free. Also best that you not be the one that selects the reviewing doctor.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/4/2012
    Vincent J. Bernabei LLC
    Vincent J. Bernabei LLC | Vincent J. Bernabei
    You have a valid medical malpractice claim.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 7/2/2013
    Law Office of Joseph M. Rameaka
    Law Office of Joseph M. Rameaka | Carol L. Ricker, Esq.
    You most certainly can sue your doctor for negligence in the failed surgeries. A personal injury/medical malpractice attorney would be able to review your case and file the appropriate pleadings in court.
    Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    R. D. Kelly Law Firm, P.L.L.C.
    R. D. Kelly Law Firm, P.L.L.C. | Robert Kelly
    Medical malpractice cases in the great State of Washington are governed by statutes. RCW 7.70. ( The main question is usually whether the health care provider failed to follow the accepted standard of care in the field. RCW 7.70.030. There can also be causes of action for health care providers making promises they didn't fulfil, or acting without the informed consent of the patient. These cases are extremely difficult and require the testimony of an expert witness. Miller V. Jacoby, 102 Wn. App. 256 (2000). (You can read relevant cases at the MRSC website.) Doctors are trained to work cooperatively (unlike lawyers who are trained to be adversarial), so doctors are often reluctant to testify against each other. Doctors who are willing to testify as expert witness usually charge significant quantities of money to do so, and often must be flown in from out of State. Some law firms who are really good at medical malpractice cases in Washington. Only a small percentage of victims of medical malpractice make a claim, and of those that do, only about 20% ever get any money to compensate them. Nonetheless, sometimes justice requires assigning responsibility where it is due.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    Just reviewing the facts you have discussed in the Question Detail, I think you have good reason to suspect medical negligence or error. What is determinative in your case is whether the surgeon failed to live up to the standard of care in his profession. Many more details are needed before a lawyer is able to discuss the prospects of a lawsuit.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    Law Office of J. Michael Gatien
    Law Office of J. Michael Gatien | J. Michael Gatien
    Yes, you can pursue this but, a complete medical evaluation is needed by an expert witness. This should be undertaken soon as there is a one year statute of limitations.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    Law Office of Ronald Arthur Lowry
    Law Office of Ronald Arthur Lowry | Ronald Arthur Lowry
    Yes, if this conduct falls below the standard of care such that it is negligence. There are other requirements, too. Contactt a Med-Mal attorney for more specifics.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    Goodman & Goodman PA | Bruce Elliott Goodman
    The facts that you allege in your question would certainly seem to give rise to a medical malpractice claim against your surgeon.
    Answer Applies to: Maryland
    Replied: 7/2/2013
    Joel H. Schwartz, P.C.
    Joel H. Schwartz, P.C. | Steven A. Schwartz
    You may certainly have a claim, but an expert will need to definitively say that the doctor used substandard care.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    AyerHoffman, LLP
    AyerHoffman, LLP | David C. Ayer
    Based on the facts you have provided, it appears you have a claim against the surgeon for medical malpractice arising from, at the very least, the surgeon's failure to tack the mesh. You should consult a medical malpractice attorney to determine the strength of your case. In the meantime, continue to seek medical attention and begin to keep a journal of the manner in which these problems are affecting your everyday life.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    Ewusiak & Roberts, P.A.
    Ewusiak & Roberts, P.A. | Christopher J. Roberts
    It sounds like the doctor's care may have fallen below the standard of care, and that you may have suffered avoidable complications and further injuries (damages). There are the basic elements of a medical negligence claim. Be aware that Florida has very doctor friendly medical negligence laws (including short time limitations for filing suit) thanks to powerful lobbyists who work for the hospitals and insurance companies, so make sure to talk to a lawyer as soon as your physical condition permits.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 2/17/2012
    Bulman Law Associates PLLC Injury Law Firm
    Bulman Law Associates PLLC Injury Law Firm | Thomas Bulman
    Yes, Failure to properly attach the mesh would fall below the standard of care.
    Answer Applies to: Montana
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    The Carlile Law Firm, LLP
    The Carlile Law Firm, LLP | D. Scott Carlile
    To sue a doctor for medical malpractice you must be able to show the doctor's actions fell "below the standard of care". Based on the facts you state in your email, you may have a potential claim.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 1/3/2012
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