Medical Verdicts

Did overlooked fistula lead to surgeries, ileostomy?


Medina County (Ohio) Court of Common Pleas

During vaginal delivery, an Ob/Gyn performed an episiotomy on a 38-year-old woman. Several months later, the woman was diagnosed with a rectovaginal fistula.

After 3 attempts to repair her fistula proved to be unsuccessful, the patient was referred to an anorectal specialist. Subsequently, she underwent an ileostomy, a successful repair surgery, and finally, a reversal of the ileostomy.

In suing, the woman argued that the Ob/Gyn was negligent for not recognizing the initial rectal injury and for not successfully repairing it at the time of delivery or thereafter.

The physician claimed that the fistula had formed several months after delivery and was not related to the birth. He also contended that surgical attempts to repair the fistula were appropriate.

  • The jury awarded the plaintiff $757,883.
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.

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