Southern Highlands Man Receives $175,000 in Compensation Following Mismanagement After Hemicolectomy

PUBLISHED 18 Jun 2020

In 2017, our client attended on his general practitioner and following investigation, was found to have a positive faecal occult present in the lower intestine. He was referred to a general surgeon for the purposes of a colonoscopy.

He was found to have a stricture formation in the colon and was scheduled for an open right hemicolectomy. This procedure occurred in September of 2017. No malignancy was identified, and only limited evidence of inflammatory disorder was found.

Several days later, our client began vomiting large amounts of black fluid and was in increasing abdominal pain. A surgical drain produced 700ml of fluid but this was not addressed by the general surgeon. Our client was discharged several days later. He returned approximately two weeks later to the same hospital with an acute onset of abdominal pain.

A CT scan revealed a small amount of free-flowing fluid in the pelvis, and another abdominal CT scan showed ongoing inflammatory thickening of the sigmoid and rectosigmoid. An emergency laparotomy was performed three days later, and it was found that our client was suffering from generalized peritonitis and generalized abdominal tenderness.

As a result of the delay in diagnosis, our client lost a significant proportion of his colon, required an ileostomy and ileostomy bag as a result, and also suffered psychologically, later being diagnosed with a Persistent Depressive Disorder.

In November of 2017, this gentleman contacted Gerard Malouf & Partners and sought advice from our expert medical negligence team. This matter was handled by Mr Keegan Behrens, an associate at the firm, who worked diligently in order to achieve the best possible result for our client. Medico-legal opinions were sought from two general surgeons, as well as a psychiatrist, to comment on the negligence of the defendant and also to outline the considerable harm that negligence had resulted in for our client.

The matter proceeded to mediation, where a veteran barrister working with Mr Behrens were able to obtain a result of $175,000 for our client. Our client was happy with this result and happy to be putting terrible incident behind him. It is our hope that this well-deserved compensation will be used to assist in obtaining the treatment he needs to get his life back on track.

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Call us now on 1800 004 878 to book a free appointment with one of my compensation experts, or email your enquiry.