What should I do if staples were left in my chest after surgery?

UPDATED: Apr 29, 2011

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What should I do if staples were left in my chest after surgery?

After surgery in 2004 there were staples left in my chest which are now causing problems. How much could I sue for? Should I speak with a personal injury attorney? I, Los Angeles County, CA.

Asked on April 29, 2011 under Malpractice Law, California


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

The time that has elapsed here may present a problem.  In the law there is something known as the "statute of limitations". This is the time period in which a lawsuit must be commend. As a general rule a medical malpractice claim must commence within 2 years from the date of discovery of negligence.  However, the limitations period is "tolled" (extended) in cases involving a foreign object in the body (such as you have here with the staples).  In such a case, the statute of limitations period is from the date the claimant discovers the foreign object or should have reasonably done so.

Since you didn't give more by way of details its hard to know for sure if you can still bring a claim.  Therefore, you should consult directly with a medical malpractice attorney in your area.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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