Ohio woman granted $10.3M verdict after botched colon surgery

An Ohio woman won a $10.3 million jury verdict more than four years after an Ethicon Endoscopy stapler malfunctioned during surgery.

Nikki Simon, 53, was admitted to Troy, Ohio-based Upper Valley Medical Center to have a benign polyp removed from her colon in December 2016, according to a March 28 statement from Crandall & Pera Law. The procedure would remove the part of the colon with the polyp and then reconnect the intestines.

An Ethicon stapler designed to cut through the colon and prevent intestinal leakage was used. However, the device failed to staple during surgery, and Ms. Simon had to have her sigmoid and transverse colon removed.

The jury came to a $10.3 million verdict March 27 after a two-week trial.

A spokesperson for Ethicon, a Johnson & Johnson company, said an appeal is being considered.

"At Ethicon, patient and product safety is always our top priority," the spokesperson said in an email to Becker's ASC Review. "We are considering our options regarding appeal in this case as we believe the verdict contradicts evidence presented at trial that the products were properly designed and that surgeons were informed of known risks."

Note: This article was updated 2:40 p.m. April 1 to include Ethicon's response.

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