Medicine: The Doctor's Fault: Three Cases

MANY people joke about surgeons leaving assorted instruments in their patients. Not John Everard, 33, a worker in an airplane factory in Glendale, Calif. Shortly after Everard had undergone a gallbladder operation, he began to feel pains in his lower right abdomen. His physician assured him that his discomfort was normal and would soon disappear. It persisted; more than two years later, an X ray revealed why: Everard's surgeon had failed to remove a hemostat, or surgical clamp, which had lodged in his patient's abdominal cavity. The facts speak for themselves, argued Everard's attorney. They did indeed. Holding that such a...

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