Illinois readers may be saddened to learn that a young girl was placed on life support after suffering severe complications following a routine tonsil surgery. She had undergone a procedure to relieve her sleep apnea by removing her tonsils.
While in recovery, the girl began to experience unusual complications. Three days after the surgery, she was declared brain dead after going into cardiac arrest. It is not clear whether the complications were caused by surgical error, but the hospital says that it will conduct an investigation. The hospital did not furnish any specific information regarding the complications that could occur for this type of procedure, but a hospital representative stated that any surgery presents risks and may result in complications.
The girl's family members have expressed frustration with the way that the complications were handled by hospital staff following the surgery. According to them, the hospital was slow in responding to her escalating post-surgery symptoms. The girl's grandmother, who is an experienced nurse, expressed frustration with the hospital, saying that there was a lack of urgency among staff members.
A surgical error can cause severe complications, which might result in brain injury, cardiac arrest or death for patients, but the process of proving that a surgical error did occur for medical malpractice claims may be complicated and expensive for their families. Medical experts may be required to interpret evidence and explain medical terminology to jurors. A personal injury attorney may have the resources and connections to build a credible case for either negotiation or litigation if a claim is filed.
Source: The Huffington Post, "Routine Tonsil Surgery Leaves Girl, 13, Brain Dead", Lydia O'Connor, December 17, 2013