Sacramento Woman Claims Medical Malpractice After Surgical Complications

It is worth noting that situations similar to those described in this medical malpractice case could just as easily occur at any of the healthcare facilities in the area, such as Kaiser Permanente, UC Davis Medical Center, Mercy, Methodist, or Sutter.

(Please also note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this personal injury lawsuit and its proceedings.)

INJURIES: Melon had multiple lengthy admissions to the UC Davis Medical Center. She was treated for sepsis, systemic inflammatory response syndrome, malnutrition, a duodenal fistula and an enterocutaneous fistula. During one admission, she was treated with pressors to maintain her blood pressure and this treatment caused an amputation of the toes on her left foot and a partial amputation of the right foot. The enterocutaneous fistula healed and the duodenal was closed during a procedure in October 2007. Melon remained severely de-conditioned and she developed contractures of the AcHaimes tendons.


On Aug. 23, 2005, plaintiff Karen Melon, 26, unemployed, underwent a laparoscopic cholecystectomy performed by general surgeon Jeffrey R. Jemming. The following day, Melon had signs of sepsis and evidence of a bile leak. General surgeon Jerry Aaron, who was Jemming’s partner, performed an exploratory laparotomy. He found and repaired a perforation on the anterior aspect of the first part of the duodenum.

Melon’s condition initially improved, but then worsened on Aug. 29. There was increasing drainage from a drain Aaron had placed. On Sept. 1, Jemming performed an exploratory laparotomy with Aaron assisting. Jemming performed a Kocher maneuver and found a perforation on the posterior aspect of the second part of the duodenum. He resected a portion of the duodenum and performed a primary anastomosis.

Melon’s post-operative course was complicated by sepsis, systemic inflammatory response syndrome and adult respiratory distress syndrome. She was intubated and put on a ventilator. On Sept. 18, she was transferred to the UC Davis Medical Center.

For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.

Claiming medical malpractice, Melon sued Sacramento Hospital, Jemming and Aaron, but the case only went to trial against Aaron.

Plaintiff’s counsel asserted that Aaron missed a second perforation that occurred during Jemming’s laparoscopic cholecystectomy.

Defense counsel contended that Aaron did not miss a second perforation. The second perforation occurred approximately five days later, when a duodenal ulcer perforated, according to the defense.

Melon’s medical expenses/Medi-Cal lien totaled $791,380. Future medical expenses were outlined in a life care plan and the plaintiff asked the jury to award $3,845,393 in future medical expenses. She also asked for unspecified past and future losses of income.

For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.

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