Boy Whose Testicles Were Removed During Surgery Loses Trial, Awarded No Money

| by Will Hagle

A Portland jury ruled that an Oregon boy who lost both of his testicles during a surgery would not be awarded any money as a result of his trial against Oregon Health & Science University. The boy’s parents had sued OHSU, where the boy received his treatment, for $1.4 million to cover medical expenses and the emotional trauma that would result from the surgery. The jury presiding over the case ultimately found that the OHSU surgeons were permitted to carry out the procedure, and that the loss of testicles was simply an unfortunate consequence. 

The surgery in question took place in 2009 when the boy was 11 months old. According to Oregon Live, he was born with Rubinstein-Taybi Syndrome, a rare condition that leads to lower IQs and delays in speaking, as well as a higher likelihood of having undescended testicles.   

Prior to the surgery, the boy’s father had signed a consent form allowing doctors to relocate the boy’s undescended testicles in a process that involved two surgeries. The doctors, however, decided to relocate the boy’s testicles using a process that only required one surgery. Because the doctors only had written permission to undergo the procedure involving two surgeries and the testicles were ultimately lost, the boy’s parents sued for medical malpractice. 

OSHU attorney Nikola Jones argued that the loss of the boy’s testicles was a “very unfortunate incident that resulted from the inherent risks of surgery.” Jones also claimed that the boy’s parents had given verbal consent to the doctors to act in the child’s best interest, and that the doctors believed the one surgery would actually put the boy at a lower risk. 

Jurors ultimately found that OSHU did not put the boy at risk or undergo a procedure without the consent of the boy’s parents. According to the Register Guard, the boy is required to undergo twice-monthly testosterone injections beginning at age 11 to ensure proper growth as a man. He is currently five years old and in kindergarten.