Laparoscopic Gallbladder Surgery: Errors, Complications & Injuries
Laparoscopic gallbladder surgery, also known as laparoscopic cholecystectomy, is a minimally invasive operation used to remove a diseased gallbladder. Conducted more often than traditional (or open) gallbladder surgery, laparoscopic gallbladder surgery can reduce recovery times, patient scarring and hospital stays when it is performed properly. About 9 in every 10 gallbladder removal procedures performed in the U.S. is a laparoscopic surgery.
Despite being a fairly common procedure, however, laparoscopic gallbladder surgery is not always performed correctly. When mistakes occur during gallbladder surgery, patients can be left with serious, painful and lasting injuries.
At Buckingham Barrera Law Firm, our Midland lawyers know just how damaging laparoscopic gallbladder surgery errors can be. That is why we are committed to helping injured people and their families:
- Figure out when medical mistakes and negligence have contributed to their injuries
- Identify their options for financial recovery
- Fight for the compensation and justice they deserve so they can concentrate on getting better.
Although we cannot undo the past, we are here for you now, and our representation can make a big difference in the strength of your case, as well as in your recovery and future.
How Laparoscopic Gallbladder Surgery Is Performed
Removing the gallbladder via laparoscopic surgery starts with administering general anesthesia so the patient remains unconscious during the operation. Then:
- Four small (¼- to ½-inch) incisions are made on the patient’s abdomen.
- Narrow tubes (laparoscopic ports or trocars) are inserted into the incisions.
- A specially designed camera and surgical tools are inserted into these tubes. This allows the surgeon to see the patient’s internal organs while separating the gallbladder from the surrounding tissues and organs.
- Once separated, the gallbladder is removed through one of the abdominal incisions.
- After the gallbladder has been removed, the small incisions are closed.
The entire procedure generally takes about 2 hours or less.
About 5 percent of laparoscopic gallbladder surgeries need to be converted to open or traditional gallbladder surgeries (due to, for example, excessive scar tissue in the abdomen or difficulty deciphering the structures surrounding the gallbladder).
Laparoscopic Gallbladder Surgery Mistakes & Complications
Although laparoscopic gallbladder surgery can be safely performed by an experienced surgeon, mistakes and oversights can occur when surgeons are inexperienced, when they are rushing through the procedure, or even when others in the operating room make errors.
Some common examples of laparoscopic gallbladder surgery errors include:
- Cutting or perforating the bile duct
- Puncturing or tearing the organs surrounding the gallbladder
- Administering the wrong type(s) or amount(s) of anesthesia or other medications (before, during or after the surgery)
- Leaving surgical tools or instruments inside of patients.
These and other mistakes can result in serious complications that may include (but may not be limited to):
- Bile leakage into the abdominal cavity (bile peritonitis)
- Serious infections, such as bile duct infections (cholangitis), which can spread to the small intestines
- Digestive problems
- Severe (and possibly permanent) abdominal pain.
In some cases, corrective surgery may be necessary to treat these laparoscopic gallbladder surgery complications. If, however, these complications go undiagnosed or untreated, they can result in organ failure or even death.
After Laparoscopic Gallbladder Surgery Errors Occur: The Recovery Options
When medical negligence plays a role in causing laparoscopic gallbladder surgery errors, the following are just some of the parties that may be liable:
- Other medical professionals
- Hospitals and other facilities (if their staff or policies contributed to the mistakes that harmed patients).
Taking action to hold the negligent parties accountable for the harm caused by laparoscopic gallbladder surgery mistakes can result in awards that may include compensation for (but not limited to):
- Medical expenses, including both past and future treatment costs
- Lost wages, including possibly future lost wages (if serious complications prevent victims from being able to earn a living)
- Pain and mental suffering
- Funeral and burial costs (if these complications are fatal).
Find Out More about Your Recovery Options: Contact a Midland Medical Malpractice Lawyer at Buckingham Barrera Law Firm
If you or a loved one has been injured by gallbladder surgery mistakes, you can rely on a Midland medical malpractice lawyer at Buckingham Barrera Law Firm for vigorous advocacy and experienced help with your financial recovery.
Call (432) 570-1919 or email our firm via the contact form to schedule a free consultation with one of our lawyers. When you meet with us, you can get clear-cut answers about your rights and best options for recovery so that you have the information you need to make the right decision for you and your family as you move forward.
From offices based in Midland, our skilled lawyers provide superior service and representation to injured people throughout Midland County, the state of Texas, the state of New Mexico, and the U.S.