Patient Develops Testicle Infection Following Botched Vasectomy

    This case involves a 43-year-old male patient who underwent a vasectomy. Within 2 hours of the procedure, the patient called the defendant regarding brisk bleeding. The physician instructed the patient to apply pressure and reassured him there was no cause for alarm. Within the hour, the patient called the doctor back complaining of heavy bleeding and noted that no matter how much pressure was placed, the bleeding persisted. 6 hours after the procedure, the patient returned to the physician’s office with excessive bleeding. The surgeon put a stitch in a vessel and told the patient to put a towel over it should he continue to bleed. The patient continued bleeding significantly following his second discharge. The next day, the patient presented to the emergency room with a significantly enlarged testicle, extreme pain, and anemia. The patient’s scrotum was filled with blood and he later developed an infection in the testicle.

    Question(s) For Expert Witness

    • "1. How often do you perform this procedure?
    • 2. If a patient is bleeding briskly before the procedure ends, is it appropriate to address the bleeding prior to releasing the patient?
    • 3. If a stitch in a vessel does not control bleeding, what steps need to be taken?
    • 4. Are you available to review the 15 pages of records before June 9, 2017?
    • 5. Have you ever reviewed a similar case? If so, please explain.
    • 6. Have you ever been sued or arrested?"

    Expert Witness Response E-000493

    If an initial stitch does no stop bleeding you need to go to the operating room, extend the excision and definitively control the bleeding. I have reviewed similar cases two or three times. Invariably, the initial inadequate response by the operating physician leads to such a complication which is avoidable. Bleeding is a risk of any procedure but since the operation seems “minor” in the mind of the physician the response to the complication may be initially inadequate. As in many cases, the real problem is not the complication per se but failure to take remedial action promptly

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