Fresno, California — A 55-year-old woman in California has filed a lawsuit over a botched surgery that resulted in the wrong organ being removed.
The woman is now left without a spleen and has to undergo another operation to remove the kidney that was meant to be taken out in the first place.
Sarajane Parfitt of Fresno had gone to the Community Regional Medical Center last year to have her diseased left kidney removed. The mishap went unnoticed for several days until the organ that was removed was submitted for evaluation, LOCAL 12 reported.
A pathologist found that the submitted “kidney” was, in fact, a spleen. He “was so astonished, he asked other pathologists to confirm his diagnoses,” and all of them agreed that the organ was a spleen.
“The hospital immediately runs a CT scan and sure enough, her kidney, which should’ve been removed, was still there. They’d taken out the wrong organ — her spleen,” said Parfitt’s attorney, Paul Pimentel, according to the outlet.
Parfitt will have to undergo another surgery to have her kidney removed.
One can live without the spleen because other organs will take over its functions in its absence. However, Parfitt will still be at risk of contracting serious infections.
“She’s at risk for infections and she has to be very sensitive to that issue,” the attorney added. “She’s had to have a lot of injections to prevent infections in the future, and she still needs her kidney out.”
The bungled surgery has left Parfitt with “severe emotional distress,” the lawsuit said.
Court documents mention the names of Dr. Narayana Ambati, Community Regional Medical Center and Urology Associates, and Dr. Shahin Chandrasoma.
Dr. Ambati’s lawyer, Mike Ball, said the doctor did not perform the surgery and that it was the visiting surgeon, Dr. Chandrasoma, who operated on Parfitt.
“Dr. Ambati was NOT involved in the nephrectomy. The surgeon actually was a locum tenens, Dr. Chandrasoma…” Ball said, according to the Fresco Bee.
Community Regional Medical Center issued a statement in light of the lawsuit.
“During this difficult time for patient Sarajane Parfitt and her family members, we offer our sympathy. Because this case is pending, we are unable to comment,” the statement read.
Pimentel believes the case will reach an out-of-court settlement as the “doctor does not want this case to follow him.”
“Ninety-nine percent of cases settle” out of court, Pimentel told the outlet. “The fact is, this is so egregious, they should settle.”
The case will be revisited in court on Oct. 13.