This was a 51 year old self-employed family man who had a two month history of gallstones with related pain. An Armstrong County surgeon performed a laparoscopic procedure to remove the inflamed gallbladder and gallstones. The patient had been told by the surgeon that he would only stay in the hospital overnight and would be able to return to work the next day.
The morning after the surgery, the patient was vomiting and leaking substantial bile and blood from the surgical drain inserted into his abdomen. The patient was rushed to a major Pittsburgh Hospital where they confirmed that the surgeon had mistakenly stapled and cut the common hepatic bile duct that drained the liver. A complex surgery was performed reconstructing the bile duct and relocating the intestine to accommodate the now-shortened duct. A major infection ensued and required additional hospitalization and rehabilitation.
The patient’s business suffered a substantial loss as the owner was absent for several months while he recuperated. Suit was filed against the surgeon who stapled and then cut the bile duct by mistake.
A six-figure settlement was obtained prior to trial.