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Surgical equipment left inside patient; malpractice lawsuit filed

Patients in Illinois may want to learn about a medical malpractice suit that was filed by a woman and her husband after surgeons found a surgical glove left in her abdominal cavity during a previous surgery. The Montana couple is suing physicians at Creighton University Medical Center and Pope Paul VI Institute for the Study of Human Reproduction in Nebraska for failure to tell her the initial surgery was unlikely to help her get pregnant, professional negligence and damaging her family relationships.

In 2011, the woman had a six-hour surgery that was supposed to help her have another baby. She never conceived. Immediately following the surgery, she began experiencing a worsened condition, which included night sweats, major hot flashes, bloating and discomfort and pain in her abdomen. In 2012, a radiologist detected what was thought to be a large ovarian cyst. She was then referred to an oncologist. The wife had a total hysterectomy on Sep. 4. after receiving multiple intrusive diagnostic procedures and treatments. During the hysterectomy surgery, the surgeons discovered that the cyst was actually a surgical glove that was tied in a knot, full of clear liquid and surrounded by her own tissue.

The lawsuit alleges that surgical equipment left inside the patient after the 2011 six-hour surgery was professional negligence. According to the lawsuit, the husband suffers personally from the injuries to his wife. His injuries are loss of consortium, specifically, comfort, assistance, companionship, affection and conjugal society. Future compensatory damages are also requested in the suit for an amount to be determined later.

The wife, her lawyers, Creighton medical center nor the Pope Paul VI Institute have responded to requests for comments. Many medical mistakes such as surgical equipment being left inside a patient are preventable, and medical professionals should be held accountable for the injuries and pain and suffering that results from negligence.

Source: ABC News, "Medical Mystery: What Caused Woman's Early Hot Flashes After Surgery?", Sydney Lupkin, January 03, 2014

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