What Can Happen if an ERCP Fails
Many patients are looking for answers as to what happens if an ERCP fails, and what might happen if it does. Anyone who has had an ERCP and suffered from severe complications should file a free case review to help determine their best legal options.
What is an ERCP?
An ERCP, or endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography, is a procedure that aims to diagnose and/or treat certain diseases in several organs in the abdominal area, including the gallbladder, pancreas, and liver. A doctor threads a long tube with a camera placed in the end through the esophagus and stomach, down into the top part of the small intestine (duodenum). Once the doctor gets the tube into the duodenum, a small catheter extends through the end of the scope and squirts a dying agent that allows the gallbladder, pancreatic and bile ducts to be seen on the ensuing abdominal X-rays.
When performed properly, the procedure can accurately identify blockage or dilation of the ducts and inflammation of the tissue, which could be indirect effects of pancreatic cancer, chronic pancreatitis, or stones in one or more of the ducts.
An ERCP can also be used as a treatment for pancreatic cancer in patients who are unable to undergo curative surgery. When cancers prevent the proper flow of bile from the liver, an ERCP can be performed to insert a stent into the duct, allowing it to properly drain while alleviating symptoms such as jaundice, liver damage, risk of bacterial infection in the blood and severe pain.
Why Would an ERCP Fail?
As with any medical procedure, there is a potential for serious complications. Factors such as the level of experience of the team performing the procedure, the cleanliness of the equipment, and existing medical issues can all contribute to ERCP failure. For example, according to the European Medical Journal, sedation, anatomy of the upper gastrointestinal tract, equipment and technique are only a few of several factors that can affect the outcome of the procedure.
What Can Happen if an ERCP Fails?
The most common complication associated with ERCP is inflammation of the pancreas (pancreatitis), which can cause serious complications itself, including cysts, infection, kidney failure, breathing problems, diabetes, malnutrition, and even pancreatic cancer. Other complications from ERCP include, but are not limited to, infection, bleeding, and bowel perforation.
Can I Take Legal Action?
If you or someone you know has had an ERCP and then been diagnosed with pancreatitis or suffered from other complications, you may be entitled to financial compensation. Click here to file a free case review and have the details of your claim examined by an experienced product liability attorney, who will then help you determine your best course of legal action.