A Medical Device is Left In a Woman During Her Hysterectomy

Shelly Gerrans was a homemaker, a loving wife, and the caring mother to three young children.  And when she required a hysterectomy, her husband Larry wasn't worried.  He had insurance through his employer that would cover the procedure.  What they didn't imagine, however, was the possibility that medical negligence could completely derail their lives.  

Shelly went in for surgery in the winter of 2006 and the hysterectomy was a complete success, or so they thought.  But by August of 2007, tragedy struck, Shelly collapsed on the floor of her kitchen unable to use her legs.  From the waist down, Shelly had become completely paralyzed.  After x-rays were conducted, it was discovered that the doctor had left a Uterine manipulator inside of her abdomen during her hysterectomy.  She was rushed into emergency surgery to remove it, but it was too late, Shelly had become completely paralyzed.

Although the Gerrans sued for damages, because Shelly was a stay-at-home mother, and they had insurance the economic damages she received were minimal.  All they received for non-economic damages was $250,000 for a lifetime of paralysis because of MICRA.  The Gerrans' troubles were deepened during the 2008 financial crisis.  Larry lost his job, including his insurance, which bankrupted his family because of medical bills.

"We lost our home, we lost everything.  There was no way we could keep up with the ongoing medical costs after I lost my job," Larry said, "All because of a doctors negligence,"