At the age of 21, many young adults in Delaware are in college, getting jobs, dating and enjoying their youth in various ways. Sadly, after one man's heart surgery, he was destined only to spend the rest of his life being cared for by his family. His case is not unlike others where mistakes are made during surgery that lead to disabilities, brain injuries, unexpected recovery and even death.
At 21 years of age, the man had a heart condition that warranted surgery. His surgeon decided to attempt to perform a questionable heart valve replacement on the young man. Unfortunately for the patient, during the surgery air entered his blood stream, creating air embolisms that caused severe damage to his brain.
The man's family filed a lawsuit against the hospital, the surgeon and other physicians affiliated with his treatment. According to reports, the hospital and other surgeons agreed to a settlement outside of civil court, but the lawsuit against the surgeon proceeded further through the court system. The lawsuit claimed that the surgeon was not qualified to perform the surgery, and the hospital was responsible for knowing his limitations. The court agreed with the man's family, and a multi-million dollar judgment was awarded.
Past medical expenses, estimated future care expenses, and lost income the man would have potentially earned over his lifetime was taken into consideration for the $13.4 million judgment. By order of the surgeon's state medical board, he no longer treats patients or prescribes medications. He is able to use his license on a limited basis to work in a medical job that collects data. Medical malpractice attorneys can advise Delaware patients that have suffered similar brain injuries as a result a medical professional's mistake of their litigation rights in civil court.
Source: argusleader.com, "Medical malpractice judgment might be largest in state history", Jonathan Ellis, March 3, 2017