The family of an anatomy professor may be wishing his doctors had paid more attention in class after a feeding tube was mistakenly inserted into the professor's lungs. Carolyn Callas, Ray Callas and Jamie Callas filed a lawsuit Sept. 2 in Galveston District Court against the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston.  In their complaint, the plaintiffs say Gerald Callas, a 79-year-old retired anatomy professor, sought treatment at the University of Texas Medical Branch for renal and gastrointestinal problems. Doctors ordered a Dobhoff tube be inserted in Gerald Callas for total parenteral nutrition, according to the complaint.

"Said Dobhoff tube was ordered by and/or placed by the defendant's facility's employees into the left main bronchus, which was confirmed by a radiological study," the suit states. "The Dobhoff tube was not promptly removed, but was allowed to remain directed into the lungs for an extended period of time, during which time nutrition was introduced through the tube into plaintiff's lungs rather than his stomach causing an aspiration and respiratory failure and Dr. Callas' death early in the morning on Sept. 1, 2012."

Because of Gerald Callas's death, his family incurred medical expenses and funeral and burial costs, the complaint says. 

Before his death, Gerald Callas suffered physical pain, mental anguish, physical impairment and physical disfigurement, his family claims.

The Callas family blames the defendants for causing Gerald Callas's death, saying the medical center negligently failed to conform to the standard of care by placing the Dobhoff tube and by putting food into the tube.

In their complaint, the plaintiffs seek a judgment within the jurisdictional limits of the court, plus pre- and post-judgment interest at the highest legal rate, costs and other relief the court deems just.

Brian D. Sutton of Sutton & Jacobs LLP in Beaumont and Jason Cansler of The Law Offices of Jason Cansler in Beaumont will be representing them.

Galveston County District Court case number: 14-CV-927

This is a report on a civil lawsuit filed at the Galveston County District Court. The details in this report come from an original complaint filed by a plaintiff. Please note that a complaint represents an accusation by a private individual, not the government. It is not an indication of guilt, and it represents only one side of the story.

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