Listed below are examples of cases we have been fortunate to be involved with in the past, as well as information as to how they were resolved.
Estate of Jane Doe v. XYZ Hospital
Logan County | $2,000,000 settlement
Jane Doe experienced severe headaches and high blood pressures throughout the final month of her pregnancy. Laboratory testing revealed that she was suffering from a condition known as preeclampsia, which can be dangerous to the life of the mother and the baby. Jane’s medical providers failed to order induction of delivery, despite Jane being considered “full term” and delivery at that stage being appropriate. Jane presented to XYZ Hospital for emergent delivery after experiencing extreme headaches, dizziness, and vision problems. Delivery was induced and the baby was successfully delivered. Unfortunately, during this process Jane suffered a stroke as a result of her severe preeclampsia. She was transferred to another facility for treatment, but ultimately could not be saved. Jane died of the complications from the preeclampsia and stroke.
Doe v. EFG Hospital
Franklin County | $850,000 settlement
After experiencing severe back pain for a few days, Jane Doe developed altered mental status and was transported to EFG Hospital’s emergency room in very serious condition. After admission to the hospital, Ms. Doe was experiencing neurologic dysfunction in her arms and legs, but those findings were not evaluated properly. Ultimately, MRI showed that Ms. Doe had developed a large spinal infection or abscess which was causing permanent damage to her spinal cord. She was treated with surgery and antibiotics, but was unable to regain use of her extremities. She remains partially paralyzed and will never work again.
Dr. Jane Doe v. ABC Hospital, et. al.
After experiencing severe back pain and nausea for a few days, Dr. Jane Doe presented to the emergency room of ABC Hospital. Blood tests were positive for a bacterial infection, but were misinterpreted and ignored. Dr. Doe was told by her doctors she had a possible urinary tract infection and was discharged. Dr. Doe’s symptoms persisted and worsened over time, and she eventually sought further care. Her doctors eventually diagnosed a spinal infection after a 2 month delay, resulting in permanent damage to her spine. Injuries include motor deficits, the need for additional surgeries, and daily pain, as well as restrictions in Dr. Doe’s ability to practice medicine, which she now can only do on a part-time basis.
Haxton v. Riverside Hospital, et. al.
Franklin County | Confidential settlement
In 2009, Blake Haxton — a high school senior, and co-captain of his high school crew team with scholarship offers to several universities – had both legs amputated due to his doctors’ alleged failures to timely diagnose and treat necrotizing fasciitis (commonly referred to as “flesh-eating bacteria”). Blake presented to the emergency room with an extremely painful, red, swollen area on his calf. His medical care providers diagnosed him with a superficial skin infection, and did not consider necrotizing fasciitis until the following day when it was nearly too late to save Blake’s life. Blake ultimately underwent multiple surgeries resulting in the amputation of both his legs. A lawsuit filed against Riverside Hospital and several medical care providers was settled shortly prior to trial.
Dr. John Doe & Dr. Jane Doe v. XYZ Hospital
Franklin County | $2,000,000 Settlement
Confidential settlement on behalf of parents of 16 year old boy, both physicians, who brought suit against local hospital that provided cardiac care and treatment for their son’s abnormal heart condition. The son was cleared to play in competitive athletics and collapsed and died while playing basketball at a summer camp. It was determined that the previous attempts at cardiac ablation to correct the irregular electrical activity in the heart had failed, and he was still at high risk for sudden cardiac failure. Defendants unsuccessfully to claim that the boy died from “sickling” of red blood cells because of sickle cell trait.
Dr. John Doe v. XYZ Hospital
Cuyahoga County | $625,000 Settlement
Physician-patient was required to undergo surgery for removal of a benign tumor on his adrenal gland. Preoperative testing revealed the tumor was a rare pheochromocytoma, which can cause volatile effects on the production of hormones, and necessitates preoperative precautions. The preoperative testing was overlooked and the physician-patient suffered a severe hypertensive crisis as anesthesia was being administered. Surgery was aborted but the physician-patient had suffered neurologic injury and cognitive deficits affecting his ability to continue practicing medicine. Defendants unsuccessfully argued that the standard of care did not require preoperative precautions, but physicians on the staff of that hospital had published about the necessity of such precautions. Confidential settlement.
Dr. Jane Doe v. ABC Hospital
Tampa, Florida | $875,000 Partial Settlement
Wrongful death case against hospital on behalf of physician-husband and adult children, arising out of the death of Dr. Jane Doe, a retired physician, age 70, following cardiac ablation procedure resulting in perforation of a cardiac artery. Alleged delay in recognition, diagnosis and treatment of the perforation lead to death from hypovolemia and shock. Case remains pending in Tampa, Florida against remaining defendant physicians.
Gollihue v. Conrail
Union County | $11.5 million Jury Verdict
$11.5 million jury verdict against Conrail for the victims of a railroad crossing crash. Plaintiffs received $3.5 million in compensatory damages and $8 million in punitive damages. Largest verdict in history of Union County and also one of the largest punitive damage awards in the State of Ohio.
Doe Plaintiffs v. Bayer Corporation
Settlement for $8,000,000 on behalf of 18 individuals. These 18 individuals were prescribed Baycol, a cholesterol lowering drug. However, each of these individuals developed rhabdomyolysis to varying degrees. Rhabdomyolysis is a disorder involving injury to the kidney caused by the toxic effects of the release of myoglobin. The disorder in turn can cause death, permanent kidney damage, and muscle pain or weakness. Individual suits were filed on behalf of each person against Bayer Corporation and their affiliates.
Southard v. Whetstone Care Facility
Franklin County | $6,500,000 Jury Verdict
Wrongful death and survivorship jury verdict to Diana Southard and two adult daughters, as a result of the death of her 62 year-old husband, who was disabled since 1984 by an aneurysm that left him with severe cognitive deficits, including loss of short term memory and an impaired thirst mechanism. Diana placed her husband in an assisted care facility for two weeks respite care, with explicit instructions concerning his need for monitoring of adequate fluid intake to prevent hypernatremia and dehydration. Her instructions were disregarded and her husband was hospitalized but died shortly after discharge from the facility due to severe dehydration and renal failure.
Dick v. Hardin Memorial Hospital
Franklin County | $6 million Jury Verdict
$6 million jury verdict against emergency room physicians for failure to timely diagnose bilateral blood clots in patient’ s legs. Patient presented to emergency room 3 times one morning with signs and symptoms consistent with vascular occlusion before diagnosis was recognized and transfer for emergency surgery to restore blood supply was arranged. By the time patient arrived at second hospital, window of opportunity to save patient’ s legs had been lost. Emergency room physician-defendants contended diagnosis was not apparent and that her legs could not have been salvaged regardless of when the diagnosis was made.
Lyons v. Clarkston
Franklin County | $5,000,000 Jury Verdict
$5 million dollar verdict obtained on September 3, 1999 on behalf of the family of Joyce Lyons. Mrs. Lyons was returning home from a professional conference when the car in which she was a passenger was involved in a high-speed collision. She sustained a seat belt injury from her lap belt and was transported to Mary Rutan Hospital (a local community hospital) where she was examined by an emergency physician and Dr. Mohammed Salem, a surgeon. She was admitted for observation, but was not seen by Dr. Salem, or any other physician, until the next morning. When Dr. Salem examined her the following morning, he determined she was a surgical emergency. Mrs. Lyons was transferred to OSU Medical Center for emergency surgery to resect 4 feet of necrotic bowel, secondary to torn and devascularized mesentery. Post operatively, Mrs. Lyons developed respiratory failure, sepsis and ARDS, required ventilatory support and re-operation for continued infection, but succumbed 18 days following accident.
Mrs. Lyons was originally from Lesotho, South Africa, and had a son who was 17-years-old at the time of her death. She met and married her husband while he was in the Peace Corps, and they returned to Columbus, Ohio where she was pursuing a PhD in Childhood Development at the time of her death. She was 37-years-old.
Baby Doe v. Hospital
Franklin County | $4.8 million Settlement
$4.8 million settlement on behalf of a minor child severely injured during birth. Child suffered a profound, acute hypoxic ischemic injury resulting in cerebral palsy and mental retardation. Nurses at the Hospital failed to recognize and appropriately interpret non-reassuring patterns on an electronic fetal monitor and, in turn, did not timely report the overwhelming indications of lack of fetal well-being to the Defendant OB/GYN.
Golamb v. XYZ Hospital
Franklin County | $4.5 million Settlement
Settlement of $4.5 million during second week of trial, on behalf of the family of a man who died from improperly treated pancreatitis. Mr. Golamb was admitted to a regular hospital floor under care of nurses who were not properly trained to manage patient with pancreatitis. Attending surgeon examined patient, left hospital, and failed to return to re-evaluate him the following morning. Lab values indicating patient’ s condition was worsening were faxed by nurse to doctor’ s office, but were not brought to the attention of attending physician. Despite clear evidence of deterioration in patient’ s condition, no intervention was obtained until Mr. Golamb coded and was unable to be successfully revived.
Lavender v. Gaines
Franklin County | $3.8 million Jury Verdict
$3.8 million jury verdict to 9 year old girl who suffered a compartment syndrome following application of a fiberglass cast to treat a supracondylar fracture. Case successfully challenged routine use of circular casts for such injuries because of the unnecessary danger of compromised blood supply.
Riggenbach v. The Ashland Hospital Association
Richland County | $3,250,000 Jury Verdict
On February 2, 2007 a jury in Mansfield, Ohio awarded Joanne Riggenbach and her husband $3,250,000 in compensation for injuries to Joanne caused by her attending physician’s failure to diagnose and treat a spinal epidural abscess during her hospitalization. A radiologist identified the mass on a chest x-ray, called the attending physician to alert her about it, and noted it in the radiology report, but the attending physician failed to follow up on the finding. The attending physician denied the radiologist verbally reported the mass to her, and claimed she was under no obligation to review the formal radiology report which noted the mass, once the radiologist reported the results of the study to her verbally. Because of the delay in diagnosis and treatment, the abscess continued to expand and compress the spinal cord, until Joanne suffered permanent paralysis from her chest down. The verdict is believed to be the first in excess of $1 million in the history of Richland County.
Myers v. Hessler
Franklin County | $3.2 million Settlement
L&V represented eight victims and their families in claims arising out of the shootings and mass murders perpetrated by convicted killer Jerry Hessler. The actions filed included claims for wrongful death, personal injuries from the shootings and post-traumatic stress disorders suffered by survivors who, in some cases, witnessed the terrifying massacre of family members. Hessler was obsessed with and stalked one of his female co-workers, and was briefly hospitalized at the Central Ohio Psychiatric Hospital shortly before the murders. Despite overwhelming evidence of Hessler being at high risk of committing aggressive acts of violence against identified individuals after discharge, he was released from the hospital with minimal supervision and follow-up care.
Litigation was successfully pursued against several mental health professionals and agencies, as well as the former employer of Hessler and several of his victims. Theories of liability included a failure to identify the risk of, and prevent, workplace-related violence, negligent assessment of the propensity for violence in mental health patients, and inadequate supervision and monitoring in outpatient mental health treatment programs. To date, settlements totaling $3.2 million have been paid on behalf of the victims of the shootings.
DISCLAIMER: The results obtained are specific to the facts and legal circumstances of each of the clients’ cases and should not be used to form an expectation that the same results could be obtained for other clients in similar matters without reference to the specific factual and legal circumstances of each client’s case.