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Gastric Bypass Malpractice


inner-content-img1These operations, known as bariatric surgeries, are performed as a weight loss method for patients who are morbidly obese (a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or higher) and for whom dieting and exercise have failed.

While gastric bypass has become increasingly common, the procedure is complex and has many risks. According to a study reported in the Journal of the American Medical Association, 2 percent – or one in every 50 – of gastric bypass surgery patients died within 30 days of their operation and almost 5 percent died within a year. Complications included infection, incisional hernia, ulcers, blood clots in the lungs and internal leaking or peritonitis. While some of these complications could not be helped, others may be due to negligence or incompetence.

Every patient seeking help from a healthcare provider deserves care that meets the accepted standard for that medical profession. If this does not happen, and you or a loved one has suffered harm or someone has died due to gastric bypass medical malpractice, you have the right to seek compensation for your losses, including:

  • Medical, hospital and rehabilitative expenses and future medical costs
  • Lost wages and future earning capacity
  • Emotional distress, disfigurement, pain and suffering, and
  • Loss of life’s pleasures

The seasoned Pennsylvania gastric bypass malpractice attorney Clifford A. Rieders at Rieders, Travis, Dohrmann, Mowrey, Humphrey & Waters knows the courts and the system and what you need to do to increase your chances of winning a good settlement. We offer a free consultation to carefully examine the individual facts of your case and determine the best way to handle it. Put our experience to work for you today by calling our office or by using our online contact form.

What is Gastric Bypass?

Gastric bypass, the most commonly performed type of bariatric surgery in the United States, involves creating a small stomach pouch to serve as the “new” stomach and attaching it to bypass part of the intestine. The smaller pouch will allow only a small amount of food to be eaten, and the bypassed intestine absorbs fewer calories.  The bypass also changes the signals that travel between the stomach and brain.

After successful gastric bypass surgery, patients have an average of 62% excess weight loss and improvement in diabetes, high blood pressure, sleep apnea and cholesterol. However, patients must stick to specific diet and exercise routines and may experience problems such as vitamin deficiencies, ulcers, and dumping syndrome — nausea, vomiting, or discomfort when eating too much food.

Bariatric Surgery Malpractice

Generally speaking, medical malpractice occurs when a doctor or practitioner does not conform to the standard of care in his or her field. While all surgery carries risks, and complications such as infection, blood clots, and pneumonia can occur after any surgery, malpractice can occur if the surgeon, hospital or operating staff is careless, incompetent, or negligent.

Examples of negligence include:

  • Performing gastric bypass on an inappropriate individual, one who does not need it, or one who seeks multiple surgeries
  • Improper planning and failure to warn of risks and get informed consent
  • Before, during, and after surgery and postoperative care
  • Disfigurement and scarring from negligent procedures
  • Inability to show facial expressions
  • Body asymmetry
  • Blood clots and pulmonary embolisms
  • Malfunctioning equipment or equipment left in body
  • Anesthesia or medication errors
  • Inadequate communication
  • Wrong-site or wrong-patient operations
  • Too much or too little tissue being removed where that could have been avoided
  • Injuring nerves or blood vessels
  • Operating under the influence of drugs and alcohol
  • Failure to diagnose and treat leakage

Our Experience is on Your Side. Contact Us for a Free Consultation.

If you or a loved one has suffered harm or someone has died due to the incompetence or malpractice of a medical professional, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. Bariatric surgery malpractice, like any medical malpractice, needs to be proven in a court of law.

Surgeons have a duty of care to the patient, and it must be proven that failure in this duty through actions or inactions caused injury or death.

Medical malpractice law is highly regulated by a complex body of rules. For a successful claim, the burden of proof is on the injured patient, so it is essential to have a skilled gastric bypass medical malpractice lawyer on your side.  Many cases are settled out of court, so your attorney should be adept at negotiation and dealing with insurance companies as well.

The experienced and compassionate Pennsylvania bariatric medical malpractice attorney Clifford Rieders of the Rieders Travis Law Firm has spent decades honing his skills and successfully representing Pennsylvania families who have suffered an injury or loss due to medical negligence. We are thoroughly prepared and committed to achieving a just outcome and getting you the compensation you deserve. With our competent staff, we offer strength in numbers while providing top-notch personal service.

Based in Williamsport, Rieders, Travis, Dohrmann, Mowrey, Humphrey & Waters serves clients throughout the state of Pennsylvania, offering a free consultation on all personal injury matters. More than that, we offer you experience, knowledge, compassion, and a long history of results.

Attorney Cliff Rieders

Attorney Cliff RiedersCliff Rieders is a Nationally Board Certified Trial Lawyer practicing personal injury law. A large part of his practice involves multi-district litigation, including cases related to pharmaceuticals, vitamin supplements and medical devices. He is admitted in several state and federal courts, as well as the Supreme Court of the United States. Rieders is the past regional president of the Federal Bar Association and is a life member of the distinguished American Law Institute, which promulgates proposed rules adopted by many state courts. He is a past president of the Pennsylvania Association for Justice, formerly Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers Association. As a founder of the Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority, he served on the Board for 15 years.

Not only has Rieders held many highly esteemed, leadership positions, he authored legislation related to the Patient Safety Authority and the Mcare Act, which governs medical and hospital liability actions in Pennsylvania. He authored texts upon which both practitioners and judges rely, including Pennsylvania Malpractice Laws and Forms, and Financial Responsibility Law Issues in Pennsylvania, the latter governing auto and truck collisions in Pennsylvania. In addition, he wrote several books on the practice of law in Pennsylvania regarding wrongful death and survivor actions, insurance bad faith, legal malpractice claims and worker rights, among others. Rieders also serves as a resource to practitioners as a regular speaker for Celesq, an arm of the world’s largest legal publisher, Thomson Reuters West Publishing.

As recognition of his wide range of contribution to his profession and of his dedication to protecting the rights of his clients, he received numerous awards, among them the George F. Douglas Amicus Curiae Award, the Milton D. Rosenberg Award, the B’nai B’rith Justice Award, and awards of recognition from the Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers. [ Attorney Bio ]