Delay in healing is not doctor’s negligence: Court

It is observed there could be a long delay in healing of the bone fracture and that it should not be considered as the negligence of the surgeon.

Doctor Hospital
Picture: Pixabay

Last Updated on February 15, 2021 by The Health Master

Surat: The Surat District Consumer Dispute Redressal Forum rejected a Rs 19.5 lakh compensation case filed against an orthopaedic surgeon who was accused of negligence in operation for multiple fractures and dislocation of his left shoulder.

The forum chaired by Justice A M Dave observed there could be a long delay in healing of the bone fracture and that it should not be considered as the negligence of the surgeon.

Dilip Lilawala, a resident of Surat, had met with an accident on March 2, 2015, and suffered multiple fractures and dislocated on his left shoulder. Lilawala consulted Dr Vijay Patel, an orthopaedic surgeon of a private hospital.

Picture: Pixabay

The x-ray showed damage in the humerus which had broken into four pieces. After taking the valid consent of the patient, the doctor performed the surgery of the left shoulder and he was discharged from the hospital on March 7, 2015.

The doctor had told the patient that if the fracture is not healed within six months, he may have to undergo a second surgery as humerus is a long bone in the arm or forelimb that runs from the shoulder to the elbow and consist of three sections.

However, Lilawala approached the consumer forum on January 1, 2016, nine months after he was first operated upon, accusing Dr Patel of negligence as he did not heal completely.

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Lilawal submitted that after operation, he had severe pain in the shoulders for more than 20 days. So, he decided to consult another orthopaedic surgeon in Surat. He was advised to visit Mumbai for further consultation.

In December 2015, he was operated in the Mumbai hospital after which he got some relief. Therefore, he decided to file a compensation case against Dr Patel.

Shreyas Desai, the advocate who appeared on behalf of Dr Patel said, “The doctor had performed open reduction internal fixation (ORIF) surgery for joining the humerus bone that had broken into four pieces.”

“An incision was made and metal plate was attached to the humerus to hold the bone in place till it heals. However, the complainant lodged a case in the forum demanding compensation and accusing the doctor of negligence,” he added.

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