Mumbai: Surgical mop lies undetected in woman's body for months

Updated: Jul 10, 2019, 08:51 IST | Vinod Kumar Menon

She was left bedridden after a second life-saving surgery to remove it; family writes to police, wants to approach consumer forum

Mumbai: Surgical mop lies undetected in woman's body for months
Gangadevi Sen with her kids before the first surgery

It was a routine hysterectomy that would have improved her quality of life, but Gangadevi Sen, 45, is in a critical condition and bedridden, as a surgical mop left inside her body during the surgery, went undetected for months. Her family has written to Dindoshi police about the same on June 27.

Sen, who stays in Kasam Baug, Malad East, worked as a cook and earned Rs 15,000 per month. As she had uncontrollable menstrual bleeding for some months, she was referred to a gynaecologist attached to the Jeevan Maternity and Nursing Home at Malad East, who advised a hysterectomy (surgical removal of the uterus).

The incident

Sen underwent hysterectomy on January 13, 2019 and was discharged 10 days later. However, according to her son Rahul, 24, who works as a peon in a bank, "My mother was always in pain after the surgery. She continued to visit the gynecologist, Dr. Serina Relan, who had operated on her and she would prescribe pain killers and antibiotics, stating that my mother was experiencing postoperative pain, which would last for few days. But the pain went on for days, weeks and months, and nothing was done."

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Rahul and his sister Meenakshi, 22, got married on April 22 and April 28 respectively at their hometown in Rajasthan. Rahul said after the marriages, Sen’s health deteriorated and she started getting a fever and throwing up whatever she ate. A local doctor referred her to JK Hospital in Udaipur.

Mumbai: Surgical mop lies undetected in woman's body for monthsGangadevi Sen after the second surgery in Rajasthan

Doctor speak

Dr. Hemant Porwal of JK Hospital and Research Centre where Sen was operated on again on May 9 said, "On the second day during routine sonography, the sonologist suspected the presence of some foreign body and we did a CT scan, which cleared the doubt."

"When we opened the operated area, to our surprise, we found a surgical mop which was covered by a mass. The infection had spread to part of the intestine and we had to remove the affected area. We had to conduct a supra major surgery (high risk) and managed to save her life, any further delay in operating on her would have been fatal," explained Dr Porwal.

Rahul said as Sen required ICCU admission post surgery, (JK hospital does not have this facility) they shifted her to a private hospital and then to Maharana Bhupal government hospital in Udaipur. But she was discharged as the family could not afford further treatment. She is in Rajasthan.

'We want justice'

Rahul and his father Shivlal, 48, who works in a saloon have filed a written complaint with Dindoshi police on June 27. "My mother is on a liquid diet, as doctors had to remove part of the infected intestine. She could have worked till the age of 60 and beyond, as she never had any health issues. We have decided to file a case in the consumer court too," said Rahul.

Advocate Tanya Jha who is representing the family, said, "We have filed a police complaint with Dindoshi police. We are keen to move the National Consumer Forum seeking compensation of over Rs 1 crore, as my client was not only young, but also earned around Rs 15,000 monthly."

The surgical mop removed from Sen's bodyThe surgical mop removed from Sen's body

Police speak

Investigating officer PSI Amol Shinde of Dindoshi police station said, “We have recorded the statement of all the parties concerned including the doctor who has denied any wrong doing. We have also written a letter requesting Grant Medical College and JJ Group of hospitals to constitute a medical board and once we get their final report, we will register the FIR under relevant sections of Indian Penal Code." When contacted, Dr Relan, the obstetrician and gynecologist who operated on Sen only said, "I do not want to comment, the case is going on."

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Expert speak

Dr. Y S Nandanwar, Professor and Unit head Department Obstetrician and Gynecologist at DY Patil Medical College said, "Leaving a mop inside the body is indeed an act of negligence. However, this could have been easily rectified by the doctor by seeking imaging science to ascertain the reason, instead of merely pumping the patient with higher dosage of antibiotics and pain killers, and leading to further unwanted complications."

Jan 13
When Gangadevi Sen underwent hysterectomy

May 9
When she underwent another surgery to remove the mop

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