Informed Consent Means Being Aware of Who is Performing a Medical Procedure

When we go for medical procedures, we do not always get the doctor who we expect to perform them. This may open the door to medical negligence.

This reported case is a prime example of a medical procedure gone wrong when done by someone who was not as well trained as the primary doctor on the case. The 29-year-old woman suffered a miscarriage in 2007 and was slated for a dilation and curettage. She assumed that her obstetrician would be doing the job. It turned out to be a hospital resident who perforated her uterus with ring forceps, snagged a section of her bowel and tore her rectum. What a nightmare.

As a result of the torn bowel, the woman needed an ileostomy in place for three months while she healed. However, she sustained permanent injuries that included the loss of a section of her bowel and her rectum. She is no longer able to have regular bowel movements and suffers intense pain from scarring. In other words, her life has been permanently turned upside down.

The medical malpractice lawsuit filed in this case resulted in a $2.5 million medical malpractice verdict in favor of the plaintiff. Medical negligence? In a word, yes. However, this isn’t the only issue raised by this case. The other issue is who is performing your medical procedures? Most people simply assume their regular doctor or the specialist they have seen will be doing the work. What happens in some cases is that new doctors, just graduating, garner experience in teaching hospitals. How else would they get experience?

While this may be well and good, and getting experience is indeed necessary, it is incumbent on the more senior and experienced doctor to properly supervise those new doctors. Patient safety needs to be their first priority in all cases. Without proper supervision, bad things may happen, just like this case demonstrates. This is where informed consent comes in. The patient must be told everything that is relevant to their treatment, and that includes the fact that their medical procedure may be performed by someone else. Anything less is a recipe for disaster as this story so clearly illustrates.

Have you been in a situation like this? Did you discover after a medical procedure that your doctor did not do it and you have serious issues as a result of the operation? This is something that needs to be discussed with a knowledgeable Cleveland medical malpractice lawyer. This is a serious issue and the lawyer will have you review everything that happened to you.

If your life has been turned completely inside out as a result of medical negligence, the person responsible must be held accountable. This is why your situation needs to be assessed by a competent Cleveland medical malpractice lawyer. If you have a case, you will know about it right away.

Christopher Mellino is a Cleveland Malpractice Lawyer specializing in Cleveland Medical Malpractice cases in Ohio. To learn more, visit