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By Hannah Marr, News Editor • June 21, 2024

Woman sues GW Hospital for medical negligence after foot surgery complications

A woman is suing the GW Hospital for medical negligence after she experienced complications with a foot procedure at the hospital in July 2016.

In a six-page lawsuit filed in the D.C. Superior Court Tuesday, Anne Gordon alleges that GW Hospital doctors did not properly assess her medical condition and treat her stitches when she was recovering from a chest procedure. Gordon is suing for one count of medical negligence and demanding $100,000 in addition to legal costs.

“As a direct and proximate result of the aforesaid negligence of the defendants, plaintiff sustained serious and disabling damage to her body, including but not limited to a wound ulcer and related injuries and damages,” the complaint states.

Gordon’s lawyer did not immediately return a request for comment.

On July 8, 2016, hospital doctors used a chest tube to examine the back of Gordon’s breastbone, the lawsuit states. Chyle, a milky substance containing fats, leaked through the chest tube outside of her body following the procedure, which was “concerning” for the type of procedure she received, the complaint states.

Five days later, Gordon received an operation through her foot to stop the chyle leak, the complaint states. Her doctors placed stitches in her foot to heal the wound, and she was discharged on July 15, according to the lawsuit.

Gordon returned to the hospital six days later to have the stitches removed, but the wound was still open, the complaint states.

The complaint states that Gordon returned to the GW Hospital emergency room on July 26 with “swelling, warmth and pain” in her foot. The hospital diagnosed her with cellulitis – an infection that occurs when bacteria enters through an open wound.

She was discharged the next day but was admitted to the hospital again on Aug. 3 after the incision on her right foot had opened, according to the lawsuit.

Susan Griffiths, a GW Hospital spokeswoman, did not immediately return a request for comment.

The case will be heard in January, according to D.C. Superior Court records.

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