Legal Information Centre

22 October 2012 by Patrick Tiernan

Patients need to understand risks of gastric surgery

Companies promoting obesity surgery need to tell patients about the real risks, says lawyer Sharon Allison.

Patients are not being told of the risk of gastric banks and a gastric bypass prior to surgery, according to a medical injury lawyer.

Responding to a report by a charity, National Confidential Enquiry into Patient Income and Death (NCEPOD),  Ashton KCJ lawyer Sharon Allison said that the firm had seen a number of cases where private companies had promoted the surgery as run of the mill but patients had been left with “appalling injuries as a result of what is very major surgery.”

The report said that one in five patients having this type of surgery have to be readmitted into hospital with seven per cent of these have to undergo another operation to deal with the complications.

Ms Allison said that in recent years her law firm had seen a number of cases where the consenting process had not been adequate. She added that the use of celebrities in advertising could give “a false sense of security” to patients and that companies needed to ensure that the patient understood the risks of surgery.

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