Thousands of organ transplantations are performed each year. Patients who
undergo these operations receive new livers, kidneys, pancreas’,
hearts or lungs. Individuals undergo transplant surgery with the expectation
that the transplanted organs may save their lives or improve their health.
They do not expect for these organs to give them cancer.
A woman in California has filed a lawsuit against multiple parties after
she developed cancer from a transplanted organ. In mid-2016, the woman
received a new pancreas and kidney. Doctors removed the pancreas six months
later after tests showed it had become cancerous. The removal operation
was too little, too late. Cancer had spread throughout the woman’s
body by the time the organs were removed. Her fallopian tube, lymph nodes,
ovary and bowel had to be removed to stop the cancer from spreading. Two
other patients died from cancer after receiving organs from the same donor.
According to the lawsuit, the defendants did not ensure the organs were
safe before the transplantation took place. In addition, the lawsuit accuses
the defendants of waiting too long to remove the organs after discovering
two other recipients had died from cancer. As a result of these mistakes,
the woman now requires dialysis and suffers from increased diabetic symptoms.
She has also lost her position on the transplant list.
What are Other Examples of Transplant Mistakes?
There are other
preventable medical errors that have occurred during organ transplant operations. One famous case
involved a patient who received an organ with the wrong blood type, which
caused a rejection of the organ. Additional cases have involved patients
who received diseased organs. Medical errors during surgical procedures
can also include leaving surgical equipment inside of patients, cutting
an organ, removal of the wrong body part or operating on the wrong part
of the body.
Victims of medical errors or their surviving family members may not be
able to determine whether a malpractice has occurred unless there is an
investigation. If you or a loved one were harmed by a medical mistake,
then you should speak with a medical malpractice attorney.
Washington DC medical malpractice lawyers at Regan Zambri Long PLLC could review the details of your situation at
no cost during a free consultation.