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Limpopo’s health and social development MEC and a government hospital doctor must pay damages to a patient who had a needle left in his abdomen during an operation.
Judge Hans Fabricius ruled in the High Court in Pretoria that the MEC, Dr Norman Mabasa, and Dr AJ Mahmood, of the Mokopane Hospital, pay the legal costs of the case.
The patient, Andre Potgieter, was treated for a septic stab wound to his abdomen, and was operated on Mahmood after complaining that the wound was “not improving”, and that he was experiencing a lot of nausea and pain.
However, afterwards the infection spread to other parts of his body and his right shoulder and arm became paralysed, and eight months later he developed a suppurating abscess in the surgical wound.
When it burst open, he noticed “a shiny object” protruding and had it removed by a general practitioner.
It was a needle about eight centimetres long.