Can a doctor switch the technique that they areusing to perform a particular type of surgery withoutinforming you first?

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Can a doctor switch the technique that they areusing to perform a particular type of surgery withoutinforming you first?

I had gallbladder surgery. The doctor drugged me up and did not tell me that he had never done this surgery before (except on 1 other person). My surgery is threw my belly button but I don’t have the 4 holes like everyone else; I have 1. I was the second patient in the state to have this done; the first was a lady that was ahead of me in the surgery line. They didn’t tell me until after the surgery about all of this?

Asked on September 9, 2010 under Malpractice Law, West Virginia

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Was the surgery the same but just that the technique was different? Was the surgery successful?  Are you ok? Were there any complications?  Yes, I agree with you 100% that you had every right to know what the surgery was to entail. Did the surgeon explain it to you before hand? And he said 4 holes and not one or "incision through your belly button"? Was it experimental and did it fail?  These are questions that need to be answered.  Generally, I do not think that this amounts to malpractice but I would consult with a malpractice attorney in your area.  The consultation should be free.  Doctors make technique decisions all the time during surgery.  If their choices result in damages then maybe it was malpractice.  And maybe not.  Good luck.


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