A Pennsylvania man received a $2 million medical malpractice verdict after his colon was allegedly perforated following a colonoscopy. The colon was originally ruptured in 2008. An attempt to treat the complications from that original rupture resulted in the colon being punctured once again. The plaintiff was then forced to have more than two feet of his colon removed and continues to suffer from the two earlier procedures.
Colonoscopies are now standard for treatment of those over 50 years of age. Mistakes of this kind may not be unusual, but the errors will nevertheless result in unnecessary suffering for the individual that underwent the surgery. Such errors are far too common. Even one mistake during a hospital procedure is too many. This is especially true when the procedure is considered low risk or routine.
The possibility of litigation is one tool that can be used to insure that hospitals are cognizant of patient safety and that these same medical providers implement safety protocol. A medical malpractice lawsuit brought by trained attorney can hold hospitals accountable to at least make certain this type of incident does not occur again.
Though $2 million is a substantial amount of money, most individuals would pass up on this sum to avoid needless suffering and possible death. The rate of perforations has been decreasing in recent years because of better technology and training. That such incidents are still occurring, however, proves that not all medical institutions follow safety protocol and take advantage of technology that would prevent such accidents from reoccurring.
Source: AboutLawsuits.com, "Colonoscopy Malpractice Lawsuit Results in $2M Jury Award," Oct. 27, 2011