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10-05-07, 12:50 AM #1
Footlong Sponge left after surgery
PEMBROKE PINES, Fla. -- A Broward County jury awarded more than $2.4 million to a first-grade teacher who lawyers said was left permanently disabled after doctors left a foot-long sponge in her body.
Karlene Chambers, of Pembroke Pines, was scheduled for a routine Cesarean procedure on Sept. 11, 2001, at Memorial Hospital West. Nearly two weeks after her surgery, Chamber was readmitted to another hospital and placed in intensive care after she had severe abdominal pain.
A CAT scan revealed that the surgeon who performed the C-section, Dr. Joseph Becerra of the Pembroke Pines OB/GYN Associates, had left a foot-long surgical sponge in Chambers' body.
The jury awarded the verdict Tuesday after a 12-day trial.
Representatives for Chambers said that an infection caused by the incident ravaged her abdomen and uterus and that she will never be able to have children again.
An X-ray shows the foot-long sponge, with a ribbon attached. The ribbon is made from a special material that shows up on X-rays, so that the sponges can be found in case they are left in a body.
Chambers underwent a second surgery to remove the sponge.
10-05-07, 12:57 AM #21*girl GuestAn X-ray shows the foot-long sponge, with a ribbon attached. The ribbon is made from a special material that shows up on X-rays, so that the sponges can be found in case they are left in a body.
If I ever, ever, EVER (hopefully NEVER) have to have surgery, I'm pressing my luck at a very high rated hospital. Like Emory or somewhere. None of this, "oops, we left a sponge in you" crap. Yikes!
10-05-07, 01:40 AM #3
If they're concerned enough to put an X-ray-visible ribbon on the sponge, why not do a routine X-ray after each surgery? If they had caught it right away, it might have saved her the suffering and them the $2.4 million."I'm not a coward,
I've just never been tested
I'd like to think that if I was,
I would pass"
~Mighty Mighty Bosstones~
10-05-07, 04:00 AM #4
Theres a doctor at Harvard who is experimenting with barcoding sponges to prevent this from happening. The nurses are supposed to keep track of how many sponges are used. Nurses are human. Sponges are hard to see once they are bloody. So this doctor came up with a barcode system for the sponges. They are checked out on the computer and after the surgery they have to be checked in again. Each one has a unique serial number. It would be great if they perfected this and put it into practice.
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