On average, Stark County has 50 medical negligence lawsuits filed each year with many of these being settled and dismissed before trial. However, after a one-week trial, a jury recently issued a $636,000 medical malpractice verdict in favor of a 79-year old man and against his treating physician for injuries suffered.
The patient was a nursing home resident after a stroke left him partially paralyzed and with substantial weakness on his left side. Even though he was wheel-chair bound, he could lift himself out of his wheelchair with help.
He was left alone on a toilet in a nursing home and fell to the floor in August 2013.The defendant doctor ordered an x-ray one day after the fall. It did not reveal a fracture. The patient continued to have severe hip pain for more than two months after the accident and was no longer able to get out of his wheelchair.
The lawsuit addressed his condition before the fall. The patient charged that the defendant doctor did not adequately assess his risk for falls, develop a reasonable care plan for preventing falls, and enter appropriate orders reflecting the patient's condition, earlier fall, and functional limitations.
After this fall and a negative x-ray, the doctor also did not perform a timely examination of the patient's left hip and leg, order more testing to evaluate his pain, consider increasing his pain medication, or review his mobility. His second fall caused his joint to significantly deteriorate, thereby resulting in pain and future medical expenses.
A partial hip replacement, which is used to repair the fracture, could not be performed. So, the victim had to use a device for two years that prevented him from using the toilet. He never could transfer out of his wheelchair again.
The lawsuit was refiled in 2017 after a 2015 lawsuit against the nursing home and the radiologist who reviewed the x-ray was settled. Jurors found that reasonable testing and treatment that was delayed
and awarded the $636,000 judgment for economic losses.
Victims of medical professional negligence should seek legal representation when that negligence injures them or causes a worsened medical condition. An attorney can help these victims file a lawsuit and seek the compensation they deserve.