Surgeon, Dr. Younan Nowzaradan, has been at the helm of many of the weight loss procedures chronicled on the reality television series ‘My 600-lb Life’. Now, the popular surgeon is being sued for allegedly leaving a retained object inside a patient. Read on to learn more about the allegations and the various factors involved in retained object medical malpractice cases like this one.
If you have questions about medical malpractice and your own health, contact Brown & Brothers to learn more about your legal rights.
‘My 600-lb Life’ Surgeon Sued for Retained Object in Patient
Dr. Nowzaradan, also called “Dr. Now”, is well known and respected for his work with obese patients. A longtime fixture on the show ‘My 600-lb Life’, Dr. Now has helped numerous patients lose weight and go on to live a healthier life. His tough-yet-compassionate demeanor has helped him create a reputation that gets patient attention and drives results.
Now, a recent medical malpractice lawsuit has Dr. Now and Houston Obesity Surgery and Best Care Clinic INC. named as defendants after a former patient alleged that Dr. Now left a stainless steel connecter and tubing inside the patient. The lawsuit, filed in September 2017, alleges that in 2015, Dr. Now performed laparoscopic surgery to repair a hiatal hernia and also remove gastric banding and a port. Just days after the surgery, the patient claims that she developed extreme abdominal pain and pressure that was inconsistent with “routine” post-operative pains.
In intense pain, the patient went to the emergency room, where a CT scan and ultrasound were performed. Doctors found a “foreign body” in the patient’s abdominal cavity, and the patient consulted with surgeons to determine the best course of action for removing what was identified as a stainless steel connecter and tubing measuring 29 centimeters.
The lawsuit accuses Dr. Now of having improperly treated the patient, failing to completely remove all objects related to the gastric band system, and failing to recognize that objects had been retained in the patient. It is alleged that Dr. Now breached the standard of care and was negligent causing the patient to suffer complications including pain and suffering, pelvic pain, and adhesions requiring surgical intervention. The lawsuit seeks more than $200,000 in damages.
Retained Objects a Common Cause of Medical Malpractice Claims
It could safely be said that no surgeon plans to leave objects behind in a patient. There are procedures to document and count items used during surgery, which is important since most operations utilize around 200-300 different items. Unfortunately, mistakes happen. Some estimates suggest that retained objects affect around 4,000 patients every year.
The most common item left inside a patient include sponges, tweezers, clamps, and needles. Sponges and gauze are, by far, the most commonly left behind. When a sponge or gauze is left behind, the patient can experience a variety of side effects, including:
- Bowel Perforation
- Death in extreme cases
When a surgeon leaves an object behind in a patient, it is considered medical malpractice. The surgeon’s duty to the patient, and the standards of care, has been breached. Such medical mistakes are called “never events” because they should never happen. Unfortunately, they occur far too often.
What to do if a Retained Object has Impacted Your Health
Undergoing surgery is difficult enough on your body, your mind, and your finances in the best of circumstances. If you have experienced an object being left inside your body after surgery, you are likely experiencing these factors in an extreme way. You may be dealing with the prospect of additional surgery, a significant financial burden, and all the emotions that accompany such an unfortunate situation.
You should know that you do not have to bear this weight alone. At Brown & Brothers, we are dedicated to helping patients who have fallen victim to medical malpractice. We want to help patients understand their situation and that their legal rights have been violated. We also want to help patients understand the potential avenues to get effective treatment and reduce the financial burden caused by medical malpractice.
If you are battling the impact of medical malpractice, contact Brown & Brothers to speak with one of our skilled medical malpractice attorneys. Our healthcare litigation team will search every possible avenue and ensure that you are getting the best outcome possible for your case. Fill out our online form to schedule a free consultation, or call our office at 1-877-721-4365.