Estate sues over allegedly fatal injuries sustained in surgery

By Dan Harkins | Jun 9, 2015


A woman's estate is suing the doctors, practices and medical institutions that oversaw the surgeries that allegedly led to her death.

Thomas Levickas, as executor of the estate of Carolyn S. Levickas, filed a wrongful death complaint June 2 in Cook County Circuit Court against Rush University Medical Center; University Anesthesiologists SC; Drs. Christopher O'Conner, Summer Dewdney and Dalius Kedainis; nurse Jillian Klunk; and Advocate Health and Hospital Corp., doing business Advocate Medical Group.

On Aug. 5, 2013, the deceased went to a gynecologist's office complaining of vaginal bleeding. A biopsy was performed, the lawsuit states, and Levickas was diagnosed with endometrial adenocarcinoma.

On Aug. 10, she went to Kedainis's office with complaints of heart burn, fatigue, constipation and indigestion, the lawsuit states.

After several tests and examinations, the patient was admitted to Rush and taken to surgery for a DiVinci-assisted TAH/BSO withpara-aortic and pelvic lymph node dissection, which was performed by Dewdney, the lawsuit states.

The lawsuit alleges that on Sept. 12, 2013, O'Connor, Rush and University, failed to cancel surgery for a cardiac work-up to be performed; perform an adequate preoperative assessment; cancel surgery when Levickas came with vomiting, nausea, hyperglycemia, hypertension and hypovelemia; abort surgery when the acidosis and hypotension arose during the surgery; monitor Levickas' condition during the operation; and control her blood pressure during surgery. On Sept. 12, 2013, Klunk, Rush and University are cited with failing to perform a proper preoperative assessment, advocate for a cancellation of a follow-up operation, and monitor Levickas during surgery.

And, on Aug. 22, 2013, Dewdney and Rush are cited with failing to cancel the Sept. 12 surgery and abort the surgery when hypotension and acidosis presented during her surgery. And Kedainis is cited for failing to consider coronary artery disease on Aug. 10; perform a cardiac work-up before surgery; and perform and record a proper preoperative assessment.

As a result, the lawsuit states, Levickas sustained injuries, both personal and pecuniary, that led to her death on Sept. 12, 2013.

The plaintiff seeks damages in excess of $100,000, plus costs.

The plaintiff is represented by Susan A. Capra, of the Clifford Law Offices PC in Chicago.

Cook County Circuit Court case number 2015L005550.

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