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Child dies after common tonsillectomy procedure

Jan 12, 2017 | Surgical Errors

New York parents may be interested to learn that a Detroit child died on Dec. 8, 2016, after having a common tonsillectomy procedure. The 9-year-old child reportedly underwent the procedure to help prevent her from snoring. Although the procedure was only supposed to take about 40 minutes, it lasted over two hours.

After the procedure was completed, the child was discharged. The mother stated that the child was in and out of sleep following the operation. The child was prescribed the painkiller oxycodone, but the mother could not get the prescription fulfilled due to regulations that monitor narcotic supplies. The child then died several hours later.

Although it is not yet known what actually caused the child’s death, the medical report indicates that she could have had an obstructed airway, suffered complications from the anesthesia or had heart conditions that were not detected. The child’s mother argued that the specialist who treated her daughter wrongfully discharged the child. The family has already hired an attorney to represent them. The hospital also issued a statement stating that it would support the family following the child’s death.

If a person dies following a surgical procedure, the victim’s family could potentially seek compensation for their loss. Grounds for filing a malpractice lawsuit can include wrong-site surgery, errors that occur during the procedure and wrongful discharge if the patient was not stable. A medical malpractice attorney may assist with gathering evidence, including expert witness testimony, that proves malpractice did occur and that the practitioner or facility should be held financially responsible.