Maryland Lawsuits AgainstTeresa Hoffman, M.D.
Baltimore, MD 21202
This website does not represent the outcome of these lawsuits against Teresa Hoffman, M.D., nor does it judge the veracity of the accusations therein. In Maryland, however, all medical malpractice lawsuits require a certificate from an actively practicing doctor vouching for the merit of the lawsuit.
Teresa Hoffman, M.D. is a board-certified obstetrician-gynecologist who is currently practicing with Mercy Medical Center. She is the head doctor of Hoffman and Associates, an all-woman obstetrician and gynecology physician group that is part of the Mercy system. Dr. Hoffman’s specialties include high risk deliveries, and she is a member of the American Medical Association and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Over her career she has made many appearances in the national media to discuss gynecologic health issues, including interviews in Redbook and Cosmopolitan and featured segments on Discovery Health Channel’s Special Deliveries. Although this page is focused solely on Dr. Hoffman, you can find information about medical malpractice lawsuits filed against Mercy Medical Center here.
Based on publicly available records and data, Dr. Hoffman has been named as a co-defendant in seven Maryland medical malpractice cases. While five of the seven Maryland circuit court complaints are available in a PDF below, here is an excerpt of the allegations:
The first available complaint filed against Dr. Hoffman lists the following allegations:
- Failing to properly perform a medical procedure. According to the complaint, the minor plaintiff’s mother was at 37-3/7 weeks’ gestation when she arrived at the defendant hospital for labor induction. After reaching full cervical dilation the plaintiff’s mother began pushing. During delivery, the plaintiff’s shoulder allegedly became trapped against his mother’s pelvis, an event known as dystocia. The plaintiff was born roughly one minute later, at which time he exhibited a floppy left arm. He was subsequently diagnosed with a severe left arm paralysis called Erb’s palsy. As contended in the complaint, the defendant doctor caused the injury by using excessive force as she guided the baby through the birth canal.
- Failing to prevent patient injury. Per the complaint, additional evaluation of the minor plaintiff’s injury revealed acute trauma to the brachial plexus nerve system in his left arm and shoulder. While he received surgical intervention to partially repair the damage, the complaint contends that he will continue to suffer from some degree of pain, discomfort, and paralysis for the rest of his life. The minor plaintiff avers in his complaint that the Erb’s Palsy present in his left arm and shoulder is the direct result of negligence on the part of the defendant doctor during the birth process. Had the defendant doctor adhered to proper standards of care by refraining from the use of excessive force during delivery, his injuries likely would have been avoided, as contended in the complaint.
The second available complaint against Dr. Hoffman lists the following allegations:
- Failing to properly perform a medical procedure: Per the complaint, the plaintiff was admitted to the defendant hospital for induction of labor on the advice of her physicians. Upon admittance, the plaintiff was allegedly informed by the defendant doctor that she was in a hurry and had four other deliveries to attend to. During the delivery process, the defendant doctor purportedly used a medical vacuum on the baby to accelerate its removal from the uterus but neglected to properly attach it to the baby’s head, resulting in a severe laceration of the plaintiff’s vaginal tissue. As contended in the complaint, the plaintiff then began to bleed severely but was not examined by the defendant doctor.
- Failing to properly direct and supervise medical staff. According to the complaint, the defendant doctor immediately left the delivery room following the birth of the plaintiff’s child, despite an excessive amount of bleeding from the plaintiff’s vaginal area. The plaintiff was then left in the care of an inexperienced resident physician who administered vaginal stiches to the plaintiff even while she continued to bleed profusely, as contended in the complaint. The plaintiff allegedly requested that the defendant doctor or another board-certified obstetrician assist with the stitching due to her unusual amount of vaginal bleeding but was initially ignored by the resident physician, per the complaint.
- Failing to provide a proper diagnosis and treatment. As alleged in the complaint, the resident physician eventually sought the assistance of a board-certified attending obstetrician who improperly diagnosed the plaintiff with a lacerated uterus and/or cervix when in actuality it was her vaginal tissue that had been injured. The complaint further contends that the plaintiff never received a thorough exam to determine the true cause of her bleeding and was instead transferred to an operating room for an unnecessary emergency hysterectomy to remove her uterus.
- Failing to prevent patient injury. The complaint contends that the plaintiff not only endured an unnecessary hysterectomy which deprived her of the chance to bear future children, but also nearly died due to massive blood loss incurred during the surgery and required multiple transfusions and intensive care to recover. The plaintiff’s ureter, which is a tube that carries urine away from the kidneys, was also allegedly twisted during the surgery due to the defendant doctor’s negligence and never fully healed due to formation of scar tissue. As a result, the plaintiff developed permanent abdominal pain and recurrent infections and became unable to have sexual intercourse, according to the complaint.
- Failing to provide informed consent. The complaint contends that the defendant doctors deviated from the appropriate standard of medical care when they did not inform the plaintiff of the risks associated with the vacuum removal procedure used during delivery or with her subsequent emergency hysterectomy surgery. As further alleged in the complaint, the plaintiff was never advised that the two procedures were medically unnecessary and that alternate treatment options were available. The complaint also cites a series of medical board sanctions and malpractice lawsuits levied against the defendant doctor and claims that the plaintiff would have explored treatment with a different physician if she had been made aware of the defendant doctor’s legal history.
The third available complaint filed against Dr. Hoffman lists the following allegations:
- Failing to provide a proper diagnosis. According to the complaint, the plaintiff presented to the defendant doctor’s office in the early stage of pregnancy for prenatal care. During the initial visit, a sonogram was administered and revealed a gestational sac but no fetal heartbeat. Levels of HCG, a hormone present during pregnancy, were also measured. When the plaintiff returned to the defendant doctor’s office four days later, her HCG levels were again measured and found to have doubled. As cited in the complaint, such a rapid rise in HCG levels is considered abnormal for a healthy pregnancy or a miscarriage. The complaint further alleges that the accelerated increase in HCG combined with a lack of fetal heartbeat should have prompted the defendant doctors to consider the possibility of an ectopic pregnancy, which occurs when a fertilized egg implants outside of the uterus. Per the complaint, the plaintiff was instead diagnosed with a miscarriage the following day.
- Failing to provide appropriate patient monitoring. As maintained in the complaint, the plaintiff presented to the defendant doctor’s office about a week after her miscarriage diagnosis with severe abdominal pain, bloating, and breathing difficulties. She was allegedly instructed to seek emergency treatment for a suspected pulmonary embolism and arrived at the emergency department of the defendant hospital later that afternoon. Despite the plaintiff’s request for an abdominal exam, the defendant on-call physician purportedly refused to perform one. The complaint further asserts that the physician neglected to order any kind of pelvic imaging and made no attempts to review the plaintiff’s prior HCG levels, despite lab work ordered on the day of her emergency room visit that showed elevated HCG consistent with an ectopic pregnancy and not a miscarriage.
- Failing to prevent patient injury. The complaint contends that the plaintiff was prematurely discharged from the emergency department with a diagnosis of non-specific abdominal pain when she was in fact suffering from an ectopic pregnancy. Her pelvic symptoms allegedly continued to worsen and resulted in the rupture of her fallopian tube, hemorrhaging, and emergency surgery to remove an ovary. Had the plaintiff been properly and timely diagnosed, monitored, and treated by the defendant doctors, medication could have been administered to end the ectopic pregnancy and her emotional trauma and permanent bodily injuries would likely have been avoided, according to the complaint.
The fourth available complaint against Dr. Hoffman lists the following allegations:
- Failing to properly administer medication. According to the complaint, the plaintiff was admitted to the defendant hospital at approximately 39 weeks pregnant for an elective labor induction. Shortly thereafter, the defendant doctors allegedly administered a dose of an anti-inflammatory drug called Cytotec to accelerate the labor process. As cited in the complaint, Cytotec’s manufacturer specifically cautions against its use by late term pregnant women due to risks of uterine rupture. Despite this warning, the defendant doctors purportedly gave the plaintiff a total of three Cytotec doses during labor. The complaint also contends that the plaintiff was repeatedly dosed with Pitocin, a hormone used to induce contractions, even when her uterus was already contracting nearly every two minutes.
- Failing to prevent patient injury. The complaint asserts that after nearly 15 hours of labor, the plaintiff was moved to an operating room for an emergency cesarean section when fetal monitoring showed signs of cardiac distress. During the operation, it was allegedly discovered that the plaintiff had suffered a catastrophic uterine rupture requiring an immediate hysterectomy to remove the uterus. As contended in the complaint, the traumatic loss of her uterus and her subsequent inability to bear future children was directly caused by the defendant doctors’ erroneous decision to administer unnecessary and dangerous drugs during the labor process.
- Failing to provide informed consent. Per the complaint, the defendant doctors demonstrated gross negligence and dereliction of medical duty in their failure to properly advise the plaintiff on the risks associated with labor induction and the use of Cytotec and Pitocin medications. The complaint further asserts that if she had she been adequately informed of the hazards to herself and her fetus, she would have elected not to undergo a labor induction using contraction inducing drugs and thus avoided the devastating damage to her uterus.
The fifth available complaint against Dr. Hoffman lists the following allegations:
- Failing to properly document patient medical history. According to the complaint, the plaintiff presented to the defendant doctors for prenatal care in her first trimester of pregnancy. During this visit, the defendant doctors allegedly neglected to fully document the plaintiff’s obstetrical history, which included a preterm birth 13 years prior. The defendant doctors reportedly failed to obtain and record a complete obstetrical history from the plaintiff during several follow up appointments, including the fact that she had experienced a preterm birth.
- Failing to provide appropriate patient monitoring. As maintained in the complaint, the plaintiff was treated at St. Joseph’s Hospital for upper abdominal pain at roughly 19 weeks of pregnancy and reported this event to the defendant doctors. Despite this apparently concerning incident, a cervical exam to evaluate the health of the pregnancy was not performed. At roughly 28 weeks’ gestation, the plaintiff was admitted to the labor and delivery department of the defendant hospital due to cervical changes that indicated preterm labor. It was allegedly only at this point that her full, accurate obstetrical history was obtained. When the plaintiff was discharged after ten days of observation, her discharge summary was reportedly not dictated or signed by the defendant doctors until several days later.
- Failing to prevent patient harm. The complaint contends that the plaintiff returned to the defendant hospital at 30 weeks’ and one day gestation with reports of regular contractions. Despite the administration of medication to delay labor, the plaintiff delivered a premature baby boy less than 24 hours after she was admitted to the defendant hospital. The child was subsequently diagnosed with permanent and severe birth defects that several doctors have allegedly attributed to his premature birth. Per the complaint, the defendant doctors should have obtained a complete and timely obstetrical history for the plaintiff that included her prior preterm birth. The complaint further maintains that the defendant doctors should have implemented treatments during the plaintiff’s pregnancy to prevent another preterm birth, such as hormone supplements and regular cervical ultrasounds. Had these appropriate standards of medical care been followed, the complaint argues, the plaintiff’s child would likely have been born healthy.
Last updated August 16, 2021