Queens County (Ny) Supreme Court—A 56-year-old woman underwent a vaginal hysterectomy with cystocele/rectocele repair. Six months postoperatively, she presented to her Ob/Gyn with a closed and shallow vagina. The physician then performed 4 unsuccessful dilatation procedures.
Another surgeon attempted vaginal reconstruction but also was unsuccessful. The woman now has a permanently closed vagina and cannot have sex.
In suing, the patient contended that the physician failed to prescribe estrogen preoperatively to pretreat atrophic vaginal tissue. Further, she maintained that the doctor excessively resected vaginal mucosal tissue.
The Ob/Gyn argued that the patient’s closed vagina was a result of adhesions, a normal complication of this type of surgery.
The jury awarded the plaintiff $1.1 million.
The cases presented here were compiled by Lewis L. Laska, editor of Medical Malpractice Verdicts, Settlements & Experts. While there are instances when the available information is incomplete, these cases represent the types of clinical situations that typically result in litigation.