When Does A Bowel Perforation Become Medical Malpractice?
If you or a loved one have suffered from a bowel perforation that happened during a medical procedure, contact our Philadelphia bowel perforation attorney at the Weitz Firm will review your case to examine whether or not you may have a medical malpractice case.
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March 29, 2019
The Weitz Firm, LLC

The last thing you ever want to hear when you are in the hospital is that you have a bowel perforation. You certainly do not want to hear that your bowel perforation was caused by a surgeon. However, we know that mistakes happen in surgery. The question is, do bowel perforations always rise to the level of malpractice?

Today we want to look at what bowel perforations are, how they happen, and what elements need to be present for a malpractice case. At the Weitz Firm, we are dedicated to helping victims of medical mistakes obtain the compensation they deserve. If you need a Philadelphia bowel perforation attorney, you can call us today.

What Is A Bowel Perforation?

Your gastrointestinal tract is a continuous system in your body that allows food to flow from your mouth all the way into your bowel. When the bowel is perforated, it is a major medical emergency because the material inside the bowel is then allowed to enter into the abdominal cavity. This can cause an infection known as peritonitis. Left untreated, peritonitis can lead to sepsis and death.

How Does This Happen?

There are many causes of bowel perforations and most of them have nothing to do with surgical errors:

  • Toxic megacolon
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Cancer
  • Fecal impaction
  • Bodily trauma
  • Peptic ulcer disease
  • Forceful vomiting
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • And more

And yes, surgical mistakes can also cause a perforated bowel. Any invasive procedure in or around a person’s bowel can potentially cause a perforation and this is a known risk that a surgeon will likely discuss with you. When complications are known risks in a surgery, it can be harder to prove malpractice took place.

What Makes It Malpractice?

For malpractice to be present, there were basic elements that need to be present:

  • A doctor-patient relationship
  • The doctor acting outside of the accepted standard of practice
  • The doctor’s negligence causing an injury
  • The injury causing actual and specific damages

If a surgeon nicks a person’s bowel while performing a surgery near the bowel, realizes the mistake, and fixes it immediately, it is going to be hard to prove medical malpractice.

It must be proven that the surgeon acted in a negligent way during a procedure. As we pointed out, not every cause of bowel perforations is surgery-related and this is a known risk of many surgeries.

How We Can Help

If you or a loved one has suffered from a bowel perforation that happened during a medical procedure, please seek legal assistance. At the Weitz Firm, we will review your case to examine whether or not you may have a medical malpractice case. If you are not sure about your case, it is always a good idea to have a qualified attorney look it over. We want to make sure you get the compensation you deserve, including medical expenses coverage, lost income if you cannot work, pan and suffering damages, as well as punitive damages. When you need a bowel perforation attorney in Philadelphia, you can contact us for a free consultation by clicking here or calling 267-587-6240.

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