Client Results

Mistrial Declared after a "Hung Jury." Case Involved Complications of Gastric Bypass Surgery. Plaintiff sought $3.8M in damages.

May 12, 2006

The plaintiff underwent elective gastric bypass surgery and days later returned to the hospital with signs of bowel obstruction and abdominal infection. A second surgery, abdominal re-exploration, was performed to ascertain whether there was a mechanical bowel obstruction. Ultimately, no obstruction was found. The plaintiff argued that the defendant improperly stitched the bowel to the fascia during the first surgery and inadvertently created a fistula. As a result, the plaintiff had to undergo another surgery to close the wound. The plaintiff alleged that attempting to stitch the fistula closed without a bowel resection was a deviation from the standard of care. Two years later, another physician performed a bowel resection and removed the fistula. The defense maintained that the bowel was not stitched to the fascia and contended that the fistula was caused by the infectious process the plaintiff was experiencing post-gastric bypass. The defense also argued that bowel resection would have been improper and very dangerous considering the plaintiff’s precarious medical condition at the time.

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