Gastric Bypass Surgery Malpractice
Gastric bypass surgery is a surgical procedure designed to treat morbid obesity (obesity so severe that it is considered to be an illness). It is indicated when a patient is so obese that it puts him or her at immediate risk of severe health problems, and the patient has been unable to lose sufficient weight through diet and exercise.
The gastric bypass procedure basically entails reducing the volume of the patient’s stomach, making it physically impossible to eat much food in a single sitting. It is a major operation, and like all surgery, carries some inherent risk. The procedure has about a 7% complication rate, and a 90-day post operative mortality rate of 0.3%.
As with all medical malpractice cases, the fact that the gastric bypass procedure went wrong does not, by itself, create a cause of action. The plaintiff must prove that the doctor did, or failed to do, something which a reasonable doctor would not have. They will also have to show that this failure directly caused the injuries complained of.
Because parties to lawsuits, their lawyers, and judges are usually not medical experts, this determination rests largely on the knowledge and expertise of expert witnesses. These witnesses would be doctors who have performed similar gastric bypass procedures, and would be able to determine if another doctor’s conduct was reasonable or not.
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Last Modified: 06-06-2013 12:26 PM PDT
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