Thu, Aug 13, 2015
Larry Obtains Defense Verdict in Medical Malpractice Case
Plaintiff underwent hip surgery on August 30, 2005. On September 1, he developed pulmonary embolisms and atrial fibrillation. Plaintiff’s orthopedic surgeon consulted my client to treat the PEs and afib. My client placed the plaintiff on anticoagulants. On September 3, the plaintiff’s lab work indicated that he had a significant internal bleed. My client and the orthopedic surgeon were confident that the bleeding was occurring at the surgical site. My client and the orthopedic surgeon treated the bleeding with blood transfusions. Plaintiff’s experts testified that Plaintiff should have immediately been taken off of the anticoagulant medications. They also stated that a filter should have been placed in Plaintiff to prevent any further pulmonary embolisms. My client waited approximately 24 hours before taking Plaintiff off the anticoagulants, and having a filter put in. During this time, Plaintiff complained of paralysis in his leg and there was swelling at the surgical site. The following day the orthopedic surgeon noted neurological problems with Plaintiff’s foot and determined that he was suffering from compartment syndrome. The orthopedic surgeon took Plaintiff to the operating room to drain the surgical site. Plaintiff suffered a permanent foot drop as a result of the nerve damage. My client argued that Plaintiff was at a high risk for suffering additional PEs, and therefore, he needed to stay on the anticoagulant medications as long as possible. He was relying on the orthopedic surgeon to examine the surgical site and inform him as to whether there were any risks occurring due to the bleeding at the surgical site. The orthopedic surgeon testified that he was carefully monitoring the surgical site and he did not believe that Plaintiff developed compartment syndrome until later at which time he immediately drained the hematoma.
The jury returned a Defense Verdict.