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Unexplained 7-hour surgery may prompt medical malpractice suit

A surgical procedure that lasted for seven hours caused the Medical Board of California to look into the actions of a surgeon and physician in Merced. Whenever surgery is suggested, the doctor is expected to discuss the procedure and alternative treatment options with the patient. Leaving a patient uninformed may give rise to a medical malpractice lawsuit.

Reportedly, disciplinary action may follow the medical board investigation. The allegations include the physician’s failure to keep proper documentation of the complaints of a 51-year-old patient. Apparently, no documents related to the evaluation of the patient were available, and the board is questioning the absence of detailed notes about an abdominal incision made during a surgical procedure that lasted seven hours.

The questions about the duration of the operation are yet to be answered, and there seem to be no documented records of an evaluation after the surgery. The patient reportedly later consulted with a different physician who suggested surgery to correct previous errors. The case is pending in the office of the state Attorney General.

The Medical Board of California says the doctor’s medical license may be suspended or revoked if she is found to have been responsible for repeated acts of gross negligence. Apart from the findings of the investigation and any decision of the Attorney General, the victim of this doctor’s actions may be entitled to pursue compensation for financial losses sustained. To prevail, it will be necessary to establish by appropriate proof that the doctor’s conduct deviated from an acceptable standard of medical care. Documented details of expenses for both the initial surgery and hospitalization, along with the subsequent corrective surgery will be required to substantiate a medical malpractice claim.

Source:, “Merced physician accused of negligence by medical board“, May 19, 2015