Woman Is Suing Hospital After Horrific Emergency C-section Without Anesthesia

by Cassandra Stone
Image via Getty/ mvaligursky

The details of this C-section gone wrong are horrifying

A California mom says she was cut open without anesthesia during an emergency C-section, according to a recently filed lawsuit. The complaint says the mom told doctors she “felt everything,” and eventually passed out after “screaming at the top of her lungs” in pain.

The woman and her fiancé are claiming medical malpractice and emotional distress from the procedure — and every last detail of this story validates why.

According to court documents, Delphina Mota and her fiancé, Paul Iheanachor, arrived at the Tri-City Medical Center in Oceanside, California last fall, prepared to be induced as Mota was more than 41 weeks pregnant at the time. Several hours later, doctors could no longer pick up the baby’s heartbeat and the doctor, Sandra Lopez, called for an emergency C-section.

Mota and Iheanachor tell BuzzFeed News that just prior to surgery, the doctor appeared to rub something on Mota’s abdomen — which was assumed to be a local anesthetic. Still, Mota says she “felt everything” as the doctor began to cut through her skin. Can you even imagine what that must have felt like? An emergency C-section with a baby in distress is terrifying enough. Having to endure feeling every single slice of a major surgery like that is unfathomable.

“I started screaming and I remember passing out,” Mota told BuzzFeed News. “They had to hold me down because my whole body was feeling this pain.” She claims she told nurses she felt the epidural wearing off, but heard the doctors say “We have to do it, we have to do it” and proceeded with the surgery anyway. “The whole room was just like in chaos,” Mota says. According to the court complaint, the anesthesiologist continued to be paged when Lopez said, “Strap her down.”

Court documents also contain Lopez’s post-operative report, in which the doctor describes how she made the incision without anesthesia and separated Mota’s abdomen muscles to reach her uterus before the anesthesiologist, walked into the room.

While emergency C-sections are nothing to be trifled with and are clearly performed as soon as possible for valid reasons, it is unconscionable that a mother would be forced to endure the kind of archaic procedure these court documents describe.

Her fiancé says he was standing near the door to the operating room because he was prevented from walking in to be with her. “I just kept saying to the nurse holding me back saying, ‘I know you didn’t cut her without anesthesia,'” he says.

Their baby girl, Cali, is now seven months old and perfectly healthy. But she never should have had to come into the world that way — neither she nor her mother should have had to endure that level of psychological and physical stress.

The Tri-City Medical Center released a statement refuting the couple’s claims: “Patient safety and quality are the utmost priorities for Tri-City Medical Center and all of our partners,” the statement issued to BuzzFeed News says. They also claim Mota was administered anesthesia prior to surgery, despite the doctor’s report and couple’s claims to the contrary.

The couple is currently seeking $5.75 million in damages.