Gallbladder Surgery Lawyer Michigan
The gallbladder is a small organ that stores bile, a fluid that helps break down fatty foods. Gallstones, hard pebble-like pieces, can sometimes form in the gallbladder. These stones can block your bile ducts, causing pain and if left untreated, complications.
Fortunately, you don’t need a gallbladder to live. When medically necessary, a doctor can remove the organ to stop the production of painful gallstones and help you live a normal life.
And while gallbladder surgery is common and routine, there is still a risk of complications like any invasive procedure. A gallbladder surgery lawyer in Michigan from Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. can help if you have had gallbladder surgery and are experiencing complications. Our law firm has extensive experience with medical malpractice claims and gallbladder surgery negligence.
An Overview of Gallbladder Surgery
Gallbladder surgery is an umbrella term usually used to describe a cholecystectomy or surgical removal of the gallbladder. Most procedures are a laparoscopic cholecystectomy (“lap chole”), where the surgeon makes small incisions, inserts a small camera and surgical tools into the body, and performs the procedure. In an open cholecystectomy, the procedure is performed through one large incision.
The procedure is extremely common, with the United States seeing over 1.2 million gallbladder removal surgeries every year. However, with how common these procedures are, doctors and surgeons may fail to focus as much as they should. Inattention or negligence in gallbladder surgery can leave patients with debilitating or fatal injuries.
Common Complications of Gallbladder Surgery
Performed correctly, gallbladder surgery is a low-risk procedure, but even low-risk procedures can pose a danger. Some common but treatable complications include:
A 2016 study found that the third most common complication of gallbladder surgery is for gallstones to come loose and spill into the body. Gallstones left in the body can cause sepsis months or even years after a seemingly successful surgery. A surgeon should make every attempt to remove all gallstones during the procedure.
The gallbladder is connected to the common bile duct via the cystic duct, so the surgeon must clamp the cystic duct shut before removing the gallbladder. If the cystic duct is not fully closed or the surgeon accidentally cuts the common bile duct while removing the gallbladder, bile can escape from the ducts.
Bile in the abdomen can cause severe pain and further complications if not removed.
Injuries to nearby organ tissue, improperly closing the incision, or a bleeding disorder can cause excessive bleeding after surgery. Excess bleeding can mask surgical complications and prove fatal.
Infection of the Surgical Site
Any surgical procedure requires precautions to prevent infection: surgical tools must be sterilized, incisions must be kept clean, and treatment must be administered to prevent harmful bacteria from entering the surgical site. Contaminated tools or insufficient medical care can lead to infections that delay healing, abscesses, or possibly death if left untreated.
Types of Gallbladder Surgery Malpractice
Medical professionals can show negligence during gallbladder surgery in several ways. Medical malpractice lawyer Eileen Kroll can determine whether you are a victim of medical malpractice.
Incomplete Pre-Op Instructions or Assessment
Eating, drinking, or taking certain medications can make it unsafe for a surgeon to perform the surgery. Your doctor must inform you of when to stop eating or drinking, such as 12 hours before surgery, or when to discontinue medications, like blood thinners, that can cause excessive bleeding.
On the day of surgery, a doctor must confirm you have been fasting and have skipped the necessary medications. Failure to do either may be cause for a valid malpractice claim if you were to have complications from the surgery.
Serious Injuries to Nearby Regions
The most common complication of gallbladder removal is injury to nearby tissue, especially during laparoscopic gallbladder surgery. While many of these injuries can be treated mid-operation, inadequate treatment of these wounds can cause severe pain, infection, or other medical complications for the patient.
Injuries that are serious or left untreated may require multiple costly follow-up procedures, and some (like bile duct injuries) can be fatal without prompt medical attention.
Incomplete Removal of Gallstones or Gallbladder
If the surgeon doesn’t remove all stones before completing the procedure, the remaining stones can cause a variety of medical problems, including pain, infection, and damage to nearby organs.
Less commonly, surgeons may fail to remove part of the gallbladder itself, with similar results: pain, infection, and potential internal damage.
Inadequate or Negligent Post-Surgical Care or Instructions
Medical professionals are responsible for giving you the information you need to care for yourself after the procedure. Failure to do so can be malpractice. For example, if you develop a severe infection because you were not advised on how to clean around your incisions, you may have a claim for malpractice.
Failing to Address Patient Concerns
In some cases, patients complain of pain or adverse symptoms after gallbladder removal, only to be dismissed by medical professionals. This can lead to weeks and months of unnecessary suffering, worsening the patient’s condition and potentially leading to death.
Do I Have a Medical Malpractice Claim?
Michigan law defines medical malpractice as when a patient suffers an injury where a health care professional fails to provide the recognized standard of care or an injury is caused by the medical provider’s negligence.
A botched gallbladder surgery may include serious errors that could have been prevented with appropriate precautions, a delay in treatment, or failure to provide the necessary care.
However, it is not always clear if your gallbladder complications warrant a medical malpractice claim, as side effects from medications, surgeries, or other procedures may be out of the control of medical practitioners.
If you are unsure if you are a victim of medical malpractice, consult with our senior partner Eileen Kroll. Eileen Kroll is an attorney specializing in medical claims. She has a background in nursing, practicing in the surgical ICU full-time while attending law school. Thanks to her extensive first-hand knowledge of medicine, she is uniquely qualified to handle medical malpractice cases.
Benefits of Hiring a Gallbladder Attorney
Many people are reluctant to establish an official attorney-client relationship for fear of the cost. However, hiring a gallbladder attorney at our law firm can help your claim. Thanks to our experience in malpractice claims, we will gather evidence, handle legal procedures, and maximize your settlement.
Handling Your Case
It’s challenging to collect evidence and keep up with filing deadlines, especially when recovering from surgical treatment. As experienced malpractice attorneys, we understand the claims process, including the necessary evidence to collect, the legal requirements for claims, and how to calculate your well-deserved compensation accurately. This can ensure a smooth experience throughout the legal proceedings and allow you to focus on your health.
Input from Medical Experts
To prove that you were a medical malpractice victim, your attorney must show that you received treatment inferior to the established standard of care. Our medical malpractice attorneys can consult with medical experts in the field to determine established medical practices and how your case should have been handled.
Higher Settlement Earnings
Gallbladder surgery errors can result in high medical bills, long-term pain, suffering, or even death. Receiving a gallbladder malpractice settlement could significantly reduce your financial stress, but it’s difficult to argue for it on your own successfully.
Our attorneys will negotiate the highest settlement that is still attainable. Your claim may be denied if you request too much in compensation, leaving you with nothing or a much smaller amount. An attorney with experience in gallbladder malpractice claims can accurately calculate the highest amount you will be rewarded to ensure a high settlement earning.
Frequently Asked Questions
Gallbladder surgery claims are more common than you might think. Explore frequently asked questions about gallbladder malpractice claims.
What Are the Most Common Injuries Sustained in Gallbladder Surgery?
A 2016 study showed that nearby tissue and organs, like the liver, are most likely to suffer injuries. These may be more common in laparoscopic procedures.
Can I Get Disability for Gallbladder Removal?
Gallbladder removal alone does not make you eligible for disability, but if gallbladder surgery errors have severely limited your ability to work, you may be able to apply for disability benefits.
What is the VA Disability Rating for Gallbladder Removal?
Disability ratings depend on whether your treatment is related to your service, the severity of your disability, and any other disabilities you may have. The Department of Veterans Affairs offers an estimate calculator that accounts for any other disabilities you may have.
Can You Die from Gallbladder Surgery?
Gallbladder surgery deaths are generally rare, even accounting for medical malpractice. However, damage to the cystic artery or common bile duct can have fatal consequences if not immediately treated. Secondary complications, like excessive bleeding or infection, can also prove fatal without treatment.
How Long Do I Have to File a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit?
In Michigan, you have two years from the date of malpractice or two years from the date you discovered your injury, whichever is later. This makes it extremely important to consult a gallbladder attorney at Cochran, Kroll & , P.C. as soon as possible.
Hire Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. to Represent Your Malpractice Claim
You may be eligible for compensation if you or a loved one experienced complications following your gallbladder operation. A skilled personal injury attorney at our law firm can help you navigate the medical malpractice qualifications and ensure a smooth claims process.
Our contingency fee basis means we only get paid if we win your case, so there is no financial risk to you to get started. Call our law firm today at 1-866-MICH-LAW and schedule your no-obligation, free case evaluation.
RESULTS-DRIVEN TRACK RECORD
Medical Malpractice / Birth Injury
A young couple from Monroe, Michigan, was awarded a $15.8 million verdict as the result of their baby son, Jason, being inflicted with Cerebral Palsy as the result of an error during the final stages of a labor.
Result: $15.8 Million
Medical Malpractice/Wrongful Death
Oakland County, Michigan
While in the hospital a mother of three was not properly treated for a closed-head injury causing her untimely death.
Result: $1 Million
Accidents & Injuries/Brain Injury
A Livonia pedestrian recovered $1.4 million when he was struck by a commercial van resulting in a traumatic brain injury in Redford, Michigan.
Result: $1.4 Million
Medical Malpractice / Misdiagnosis
Wayne County, Michigan
Patient suffered cardiac arrest and brain damage when a hospital failed to recognize internal bleeding and treatment was delayed for more than 14 hours.
Result: $9 Million
Accidents & Injuries/Auto Accident
Tuscola County, Michigan
A Tuscola County jury awarded $3.3 million to a severely brain injured motorist as the result of a defective Michigan highway.
Result: $3.3 Million
Accidents & Injuries/Construction Site Injury
A seventeen-year-old construction worker suffered a traumatic brain injury resulting from a fall in Flint, Michigan, and was awarded $1.25 million.
Result: $1.25 Million
Wayne County, Michigan
Middle-aged woman suffered severe disfiguring facial burns from a simple surgical procedure.
Result: $1.9 Million
Medical Malpractice / Birth Trauma
Child developed cerebral palsy with developmental delays due to lack of oxygen and brain injury during labor and delivery.
Result: $3.8 Million
Accidents & Injuries/Construction Site/Workplace Injury
A Westland construction worker recovered $1.5 million after sustaining a traumatic brain injury while on a construction site in Detroit, Michigan.
Result: $1.5 Million
Accidents & Injuries/Truck Accident
A Marlette, Michigan, family reached a $1.3 million settlement in the traffic death of their 5-year-old son when they were struck by a semi truck.
Result: $1.3 Million
Medical Malpractice/Cancer Misdiagnosis
The misdiagnosis of breast cancer resulted in a Redford, Michigan, woman recovering $225,000.
A construction worker redeemed his worker’s compensation case for $125,000 in Detroit, Michigan.
Accidents & Injuries/Auto Accident
A paraplegic woman from Monroe, Michigan, recovered Michigan no-fault benefits including the purchase of a new home and attendant care in excess of $400,000.
Medical Malpractice/Birth Injury
Brighton, Michigan; Detroit, Michigan
A Brighton family recovered $1.3 million and a Detroit family recovered $900,000 as the result of birth injuries and medical malpractice to their children.
Accidents & Injuries/Auto Accident
Bay City, Michigan
A Bay City grandmother was awarded $80,000 following an auto accident resulting in a broken leg.