Circumcision errors a common cause of medical malpractice claims in Miami, West Palm Beach

September 28, 2010 by Dean H. Freeman

South Florida personal injury attorneys have been following the developments in the South Miami Hospital case where the accidental circumcision of an eight-day-old infant has both created controversy and led to the filing of a million-dollar lawsuit. The Miami Herald reports that the child was circumcised without the mother’s consent and despite the fact she repeatedly rejected the procedure when asked by hospital staff.

The 30-year-old mother said that circumcision is not a common in her family and it is a medical procedure she culturally opposes. The hospital has since apologized to the family and has promised to put in place procedures to prevent such an error from occurring in the future. Aside from seeking compensation for physical damages caused by what her attorney has called an irreversible “amputation” of healthy tissue, the infant’s mother has also filed a criminal battery report with local law enforcement.
65905_hospital_corridor_1.jpg
Clearly a sensitive topic for the family, the case is also causing a stir within the community. According to ABC News, the anti-circumcision group SICSociety plans to demonstrate outside the hospital to show support for the family while raising awareness that circumcision is not a medically-necessary procedure.

About 55 to 65 percent of U.S. babies are circumcised each year, a drop of about 10 percent from when the practice reached its peak in the 1960s, Kids Health reports. Circumcision is a much more common practice in Canada, the Middle East and the United States than in Asia, South and Central America and portions of Europe.

Regarding the premise of medical necessity, the American Academy of Pediatrics disagrees. The AAP defines circumcision as “non-essential to the child’s well-being” and recommends deferring the decision to circumcise to the parents, whose cultural, social, ethnic or religious beliefs may or may not align with common American medical practices.

A decision taken away from one set of parents in a Miami hospital on Aug. 2. In other cases, medical mistakes during circumcision may lead to scarring or the formation of scar tissue or lumps around the end of the penis. This malformation can range from moderate to severe and may ultimately require surgical correction.

South Florida personal injury lawyers at Freeman & Mallard have been successfully and aggressively representing injury victims and their families in Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, and Ft. Pierce /Port St. Lucie for years. Call us today to schedule a no-obligation appointment to discuss your case at 1-800-529-2368.