No evidence given for clot formation – Hospital held negligent

  • Posted on: May 09, 2024

Failing to produce evidence to back verbal statements in a medical negligence case doesn’t bide well for doctors and hospitals. Especially if the treatment records point to the contrary, as happened in this case.

The doctor performed bypass surgery, after which patient developed clot in the brain and slipped into coma. He was put on ventilator, but to no avail.

Patient’s family sought Discharge Against Medical Advice and took him to their hometown in a hope of recovery. But they were crushed as the patient succumbed to the post-operative complications.

The hospital was sued. It was alleged that there was insufficient supply of oxygen which led to clot formation and patient’s death. It was further alleged that the doctor failed to provide reason for clot formation despite the fact that anti-coagulants were administered.

The family pointed out that neither Carotid Doppler test nor EEG were performed despite neurologist’s recommendation.

The hospital denied these allegations. It was stated that patient’s family was explained risks of bypass surgery and an informed consent was obtained. It was pointed out that stroke was result of blockage of blockage of blood vessels supplying oxygen to the brain caused by plaque, fat and debris.

The Commission went through medical records and dismissed the defence, observing that:

“The hospital has failed to give any explanation with regards to clotting of blood in the brain. As they failed to inform the resultant condition of patient and as there was no progress in his physical condition, it is quite natural that his family took him out from the hospital. The doctor in his evidence has stated that there was no supply of oxygen along with blood to parts of brain. It is the duty of the anaesthesiologist during the course of surgery to watch and ascertain proper supply of blood and oxygen to the brain”. 

The hospital was held negligent and ordered to pay eighteen lakh rupees compensation.

Source : Order pronounced by National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission on 5th July, 2023.