Physician Liable for Failure to Obtain Consent for Removal of Broken Needle in Clinic

April 15, 2019 | Strategic Insights for Ambulatory Care


What's the news. The Missouri Court of Appeals has upheld a jury verdict against a provider and outpatient pain clinic allegedly responsible for failing to get the patient's informed consent to a remove a needle that broke off in the clinic. The patient was undergoing trigger point injections for severe low back pain along the edge of her tailbone and upper gluteal muscles along the iliac crest. While the injections were being administered, the needle broke off the syringe and became stuck in the patient's body. The physician attempted to remove the needle via fluoroscopically guided incisions, but was unable to retrieve it. The patient went to a hospital where staff were also unsuccessful at removing the needle. The patient alleged in her lawsuit against the physician and the clinic that the provider was negligent in failing to obtain her informed consent to have the needle removed at the clinic instead of at a hospital.

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