Utah woman died after her blood was drained into a garbage can, lawsuit says

MILLCREEK, Utah -- The family of a Utah woman is suing a hospital after they say doctors left an open tube in her body, causing her heart to drain into a garbage can, according to the Salt Lake Tribune.

Donnamay Brockbank had surgery at St. Mark's Hospital in June 2018 to remove a medical device causing an allergic reaction, according to court documents. During the procedure, Brockbank had a cardiopulmonary bypass - blood left her body through a tube in her neck and re-entered in her femur.

After the surgery, as the equipment was being broken down and Brockbank's heart was beating on its own, the re-entry tube to the femur was closed; the needle draining blood from the woman's neck, however, was not, according to the lawsuit.

At that time, blood was pumping directly from Brockbank's heart into a medical garbage can, the lawsuit stated.

When Brockbank's blood pressure dropped, transfusions were performed and live-saving measures were taking, but, according to the Salt Lake Tribune, nobody addressed the tube in her neck still leaking blood into the trash can.

Two days after the surgery, hospital employees told Brockbank's family a "reservoir of blood" had been found in a medical garbage can, according to the Salt Lake Tribune.

The family Brockbank left behind, as well as their lawyers, have been working through what they call some of the worst medical records they have ever seen in order to figure out what went wrong.