Medical Malpractice

Failure to Diagnose Bowel Obstruction

While in all instances bowel obstruction can be life threatening, its causes can be varied. Bowel obstruction can result from blunt force trauma to surgical errors. Any bowel obstruction, regardless of the cause is a medical emergency and must be treated immediately. Failure to do so can lead to peritonitis, septic shock and death.

When the small intestine or large intestine is obstructed, a patient may experience symptoms including abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea or constipation, and bloating. Diagnostic tests must be performed in order to confirm a diagnosis and treatment of small intestine obstruction.

When obstruction involves a newborn, symptoms may include green vomit and/or failure to make a bowel movement.

If your physician suspects a bowel obstruction, an abdominal X-ray may help to determine the source of the problem. A CT scan can help to determine if the obstruction is partial or complete and will help guide the proper course of treatment.

As in most cases of serious injury, the diagnosis and treatment of a bowel obstruction has to be performed in a timely fashion in order to prevent further injury and complications.

If you or a loved one have suffered from a bowel obstruction that went undiagnosed, contact us today.

Failure to Diagnose Bowel Obstruction Case Studies

Our 37 year old client’s bowel obstruction went undiagnosed and untreated despite examinations by an emergency room physician, her primary care physician, and a surgeon. As a result, she suffered multi-system organ failure and end stage renal disease necessitating a kidney transplant.

The case settled before suit was filed for a confidential amount.

While being treated for vascular disease, it was discovered that our client’s decedent had right colon carcinoma. A colectomy to remove the carcinoma was performed by his physician. He tolerated the surgery well without complications. Two days following discharge from the hospital, he was readmitted through the ER with complaints of severe abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting and loss of appetite. His physician diagnosed these symptoms as small bowel obstruction and dehydration. His physician monitored the decedent and medicated him with morphine for two weeks when he performed an exploratory laparotomy which revealed that almost all of the decedent’s intestine had gangrenous necrosis with multiple areas of full thickness perforation. The small intestine and part of the large intestine were removed. Following this surgery, the decedent was in critical condition with unstable hemodynamics and required a ventilator for life support. His condition continued to deteriorate and he expired the following day.

The case settled before suit was filed for a confidential amount.

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If you or a loved one suffered from bowel obstruction due to medical negligence, contact us today.