OB/GYN Expert Witness Discusses Retained Products of Conception

Wendy Ketner, M.D.

Written by
— Updated on September 27, 2018

intrauterine infectionThis case involves a twenty-nine-year-old female who had retained products of conception (RPOC) following her delivery.  The delivery was complicated by chorioamnionitis.  The treating physician failed to recognize the RPOC for two weeks, resulting in a severe. As a result, the provider improperly performed an emergency dilation and curettage causing a uterine perforation. This lead to massive intrauterine scarring, bleeding, and many other internal damages. The plaintiff alleged that the issues could have been avoided had there been proper communication between the OB/GYN office, the nursing staff, and the medical staff.

Question(s) For Expert Witness

  • 1. What are the complications of retained products of conception and future health risks?

Expert Witness Response

The term retained products of conception (RPOC) refers to placental and/or fetal tissue that remains in the uterus after a spontaneous pregnancy loss (miscarriage), planned pregnancy termination, or preterm/term delivery. In this instance, infection usually begins as endometritis and involves the endometrium. If not treated, the infection may spread further into the myometrium and parametrium. Parametritis may progress into peritonitis.The patient may develop bacteremia and sepsis at any stage of septic abortion. Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) is the most common, later complication.

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