Kovai woman’s kin get Rs 5 lakh compensation for surgery goof-up

The matter dates back to July, 2010 when Chitra Illango, who was working at Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, Coimbatore, was admitted to Sri Ramakrishna Hospital for a routine hernia operation.

Published: 27th August 2018 04:22 AM  |   Last Updated: 27th August 2018 03:11 PM   |  A+A-

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File Image for Representational Purposes.

By Express News Service

CHENNAI: Eight years after a private hospital in Coimbatore allegedly botched up an operation on a 38-year-old woman, the State Commission for Consumers Disputes Redressal has ordered the hospital and the surgeon concerned to jointly pay Rs five-lakh compensation to the woman’s family.

The commission upheld the Coimbatore District Consumer Forum’s 2011 order and dismissed the appeal filed by the hospital.

The matter dates back to July, 2010 when Chitra Illango, who was working at Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, Coimbatore, was admitted to Sri Ramakrishna Hospital for a routine hernia operation.

As part of the medical check-up before the surgery, she had to undergo a coronary angiogram. During the procedure, the catheter inserted into her body broke into three pieces which were lodged near her three vital arteries, obstructing the blood flow. A second surgery was performed to remove them only after Chitra was made to pay Rs 64,475.

A few months later, since pain in her lower limbs persisted, she took a CT scan in a private clinic. The scan report revealed that three broken pieces of the catheter were still present in her vascular system near the Iliac, Tibial and Femoral arteries.

The hospital in its defence said the person against whom Chitra had lodged the complaint did not perform the initial surgery and hence could not be held accountable. “We have provided the infrastructure to both  doctors who are consultants. Hence we cannot be held responsible for their actions. The incidence of breaking of catheter during angiogram procedure is not uncommon or rare. The second doctor removed two out of three pieces as removing the third piece will cause more harm,” said the hospital in its reply.

Chitra, who died during the pendency of the case, is entitled to a compensation of Rs 5 lakh and an additional Rs 3,000 towards costs, said the commission.

“The second doctor, who performed the correction surgery, had not chosen to file any proof to refute these allegations. Hence allegations against the doctor stand un-rebutted,” said the forum comprising president Justice S Tamilvanan and judicial member K Baskaran.

The forum in its order on June 19 said that though the complainant deserved not less than Rs 10 lakh as compensation, “we cannot enhance the compensation as neither the complainant while she was alive nor her legal heirs had chosen to file an appeal”.


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  • Joseph Anandaraj M

    Sad to read the story. Medical negligence confirmed, Medical negligence disputed and Medical negligence resulted in death too. Well, the compensation claims settlement in the case is not protested, but what measures to be taken into consideration in future to avoid similar medical negligence. Doctors are certified to save lives only.
    3 years ago reply
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