Litigation Packet

Litigation Packet

Perforated and Nicked Bowels

UpdatedJul 07, 2021
CreatedFeb 22, 2011
Delivery method: Download

A perforated or nicked bowel injury is a serious surgical complication that requires immediate treatment. If left unrepaired, the contents of the bowel can leak into the patient’s abdomen and create a raging infection resulting in severe peritonitis, septic shock, multi-organ failure, and even death.

A perforation of the bowel is a known risk that may occur even when the highest degree of care is used during surgery. However, a delay in recognizing the problem or failure to take immediate steps to repair the perforation and control the leakage is below the standard of care.

Thus, in the workup of a complicated perforation case, it is incumbent upon the trial lawyer to determine the mechanism of injury and to carefully scrutinize when the first sign of a problem became apparent and whether the surgeon recognized it and responded appropriately. If the injury occurred during surgery and the problem was promptly recognized and treated, negligence will be hard to prove even if there are significant damages. If, however, the patient presented postoperatively with any signs or symptoms that suggested complication and the surgeon ignored the warnings or delayed diagnostic evaluation, the treatment was below the standard of care.

  • Addresses the legal and medical issues that arise in cases involving failure to properly diagnose and treat perforated and nicked bowel injuries
  • Features sample case materials, including complaints, written interrogatories, expert designations, motion for protective order to limit defendant’s experts, notice of intent to introduce a medical treatise into evidence, and a joint pre-trial memorandum
  • Provides deposition summaries and transcripts of defendant doctors, plaintiff and defendant surgical experts, infectious disease consultants, diagnostic radiologist, microbiologist, nurses, and treating physicians
  • Includes an abbreviated glossary of relevant medical terms, as well as related AAJ Education speaker papers and Trial articles