Trief & Olk Reaches Sizeable Settlement in New Jersey Lap Choly Claim

Trief & Olk recently reached a settlement of $875,000 in a medical malpractice laparoscopic cholecystectomy (“lap choly”) claim in Passaic County, New Jersey.

The claim involved the improper clipping and cutting of the plaintiff’s common bile duct, that was misidentified as the cystic duct during the procedure.  Trief & Olk argued that the error was made due to the defendants’ failure to identify the anatomy prior to clipping or cutting the duct.

At deposition, Trief & Olk were successfully able to obtain admissions from the defendant attending surgeon that the common bile duct was misidentified and incorrectly clipped and cut.  The defendant further admitted in response to Trief & Olk’s examination that he did not know why the error was made and did not identify the mistake during the surgery.  Trief & Olk were also able to obtain an admission by the resident surgeon that the clipping and cutting of the common bile duct was an “error.”  Settlement may have also been aided by facts discovered by Trief & Olk regarding prior medical malpractice claims brought against the attending surgeons out of state.

As a result of the malpractice, the plaintiff underwent a Roux-en-Y hepatico-jejunostomy, along with additional procedures to resolve strictures that formed within 18 months of the lap choly. The plaintiff will require monitoring due to the likelihood of future strictures; if any are discovered, the plaintiff may also require additional procedures to resolve the strictures.

There were no claims of past or lost future wages.  Settlement was reached well in advance of trial.


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