Please note, The Senators (Ret.) Firm, LLP is no longer accepting Lap Band claims. If you feel that you may have a potential case, we urge you to locate another law firm adequately suited to handle your claim.
In the fight against obesity, medical practitioners may resort to a lap band surgical procedures after all else has failed. While the lap band has demonstrated a propensity for the eradication of potentially harmful and unwanted body fat, there are several concerns surrounding such an invasive procedure. As with any surgery, there is an inherent risk of complications. However, lap band malpractice has witnessed an influx of injuries plague those who have received the devices. Lap band malpractice may be responsible for severe, life-threatening complications.
If you or a loved one has been injured by lap band malpractice, you should contact our lawyers immediately for a free confidential case evaluation. You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and we can help.
Lap Band Malpractice Lawsuit Overview
Lap band surgical procedures witness a trained medical professional place a circular silicone band around the upper portion of the stomach, resulting in a separate chamber. The narrowed passageway between the newly created chamber and the rest of the stomach regulates the speed and volume in which food passes to the lower part of the stomach. The band limits the amount of food that can be eaten at one time, therefore simulating a sense of fullness while simultaneously reducing the amount of food consumed. A doctor can adjust the device, without the need for additional surgery, by inserting a needle through the skin into a port connected to the band. Doing so allows patients to adjust their eating habits accordingly and maintain a healthy weight.
As a revolutionary component to the field of bariatrics, lap band procedures provide assistance to those looking to treat significant weight problems. Lap band procedures provide obese individuals with a surgical answer to weight management. Recognizing that obesity may result in high blood pressure, diabetes, and other complications which impact both quality of life and life expectancy, lap band procedures are a growing field in bariatric medicine.
Unfortunately, lap band procedures are not without complications and malpractice. While obese individuals exhibit a propensity for increased morbidity and complications following standard surgical procedures, malpractice on behalf of surgeons may compound their adverse circumstances even further. Subsequently, many patients experience complications which are the direct result of lap band malpractice.
Lap Band Malpractice Complications
Invasive surgical procedures come with an inherent risk and may exhibit a propensity for the development of several complications that vary in severity. However, surgeries preformed on obese individuals witness a heightened rate of adverse complications. According to Herbert Lerner, M.D., a general surgeon and supervisory medical officer at the FDA, “surgery itself has risks, including death, and those risks are heightened for people who are obese.” However, lap band malpractice may drastically increase the risk of developing severe complications. The following is a list of lap band malpractice examples that may have led to further complications:
- The doctor provides false or misleading safety information in an attempt to persuade an individual into receiving lap band treatment.
- The medical practitioner makes a surgical error, such as perforating / lacerating another organ while inserting the lap band.
- A neglect or failure to diagnose and treat corresponding complications after reported problems, causing the problems to worsen.
- Failure to follow up after receiving a lap band.
- A doctor’s negligent actions cause the death of a patient.
If you believe you have a lap band malpractice lawsuit, the lawyers at The Senators (Ret.) Firm, LLP may provide you with a free case evaluation regarding your potential lap band lawsuit.
FDA Lap Band Warning
The ambiguous nature of invasive lap band procedures display an inherent degree of risk. However, several surgical centers and one California marketing firm have been accused of lap band malpractice by neglected to include the risks of such procedures in their marketing campaigns. While their advertisements boast of the miraculous weight loss results provided by lap band procedures, they fail to address significant corresponding risks. Neglect such as this is in direct violation of federal law. The allegedly deceptive advertisements suggest that lap band procedures are without concern.
The “FDA’s concern is that these ads glamorize the Lap-Band without communicating any of the risks,” says Steven Silverman, director of the Office of Compliance in FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health. “Consumers, who may be influenced by misleading advertising, need to be fully aware of the risks of any surgical procedure.” The allegedly deceptive ad campaigns fail to address that lap band procedures may coincide with nausea, vomiting, GERD, upset stomach, displacement of the silicone band, erosion of the silicone band and stretching of both the esophagus and stomach. Adverse events such as these have led to at least five deaths since 2009.
According to an FDA News Release, the following companies received warning letters for their involvement in the deceptive advertising campaign:
- Bakersfield Surgery Institute Inc.
- Beverly Hills Surgery Center
- Palmdale Ambulatory Center
- Valley Surgical Center
- Top Surgeons LLC
- Valencia Ambulatory Center LLC
- Cosmopolitan Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery
- San Diego Ambulatory Center LLC
According to federal law, lap band advertising must contain relevant warnings and information about precautions, side effects, and contraindications. After having allegedly broken the law, by neglecting to add the appropriate risks to their advertising campaigns, the companies mentioned above received warning letters from the FDA. The letters address the neglect, on behalf of the companies, to provide required risk information, including warnings, precautions, possible side effects and contraindications of the lap band procedure. According to the letters, the companies were asked to pull their misleading ads and notify the FDA within 15 working days of action taken to correct them.
Do I Have a Lap Band Malpractice Lawsuit?
The trial lawyers at The Senators (Ret.) Firm, LLP have decades of experience navigating through complex legislative and regulatory issues and litigating high stakes cases all over the nation. Our law firm focuses on the representation of plaintiffs in lap band malpractice lawsuits. We are currently accepting new cases in all 50 states.
Again, if you or a loved one has been injured by lap band malpractice, you should contact our lawyers immediately by clicking the link below or calling toll free 1-(949) 557-5800. You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and we can help.