Portal Vein Thrombosis Misdiagnosis Lawsuit

Morgan v. Johns Hopkins Hospital

This is a failure to diagnose portal vein thrombosis case filed against Johns Hopkins Hospital on February 5, 2016. This is the 57th medical malpractice lawsuit filed in Maryland in 2016 and the fourth malpractice suit filed against Hopkins in the last month.

Summary of Plaintiff's Allegations

A Baltimore County woman is diagnosed with solid pseudopapillary neoplasm, a disease of the pancreas, by the Defendant doctor. She is advised that she needs Whipple surgery, an operation to remove part of the pancreas, small intestine, and bladder. She is admitted to Defendant Johns Hopkins Hospital for the surgery.

During the surgery, the Defendants cause an injury to the woman's portal vein, which they fail to discover during the surgery. For the next two years, under the care of the Defendants, the woman experiences a continuum of medical problems and complications including but not limited to difficulty eating, vomiting, nausea, and pain.

Test results reveal during the post-operative period that the woman has an enlarged spleen. This coupled with other diagnostic studies should have led the Defendants to test the woman further. Further evaluations would have led the Defendants to discover that the woman had sustained a portal vein thrombosis. An angiogram would have definitively ruled in or out portal vein thrombosis, was not done. An endoscopy, which also would have diagnosed the problem, as also not done. It is not until two years following the surgery, under the care of other medical providers, when the woman learns for the first time the true nature, extent, and cause of her medical injury.

The woman files a medical malpractice lawsuit in Baltimore City. She alleges that the Defendants violated the standard of care by failing to diagnose the serious nature of her problems and take proper action to treat her. As a result, she has been forced to and continues to suffer long periods of serious physical and emotional pain and discomfort, has undergone multiple additional procedures and medical treatment, and has a diminished quality of life.

Additional Comments
  • You often see portal vein thrombosis in people who have an inflammatory bowel disease like ulcerative colitis or Crohn's Disease. Any intraabdominal inflammatory process involving the bowel carries a known risk of portal vein thrombosis.
  • The majority of portal vein thrombosis arises in individuals who have cirrhosis of the liver.
  • A blockage in the portal vein area will result in back pressure called venostasis. This prevents the blood coming back from the intestines from getting into the liver unimpeded. This venostasis will cause stagnation, which means the blood is backing up. Oxygenated blood cannot get into the intestine, and parts of the intestine will die.
  • No expert report was filed with the Complaint.
  • Baltimore City
  • Johns Hopkins Hospital
  • Two surgeons
  • Failed to diagnose the serious nature of her problems and take proper action to treat her.
Specific Counts Pled
  1. Healthcare Malpractice
  2. Healthcare Malpractice - Vicarious Liability
  3. Negligence
Plaintiff's Experts and Areas of Specialty
  • Motion to extend
Examples of Lawsuits Against Hopkins More Malpractice Claim Information
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  • This is what a sample legal complaint against Hopkins looks like
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