Articles Posted in Medical Malpractice

Attorneys Jim Poe and Charles Scholle of Scholle Law obtained a verdict of $14 million dollars on behalf of client Rosalind Johnson on May 21, 2019, following a week-long trial.  The case was heard before Judge Joe Iannazzone in Gwinnett County State Court.  Jury deliberations lasted nearly 8 hours.

Rosalind Johnson, a Gwinnett County resident and career member of the US military, suffered severe and permanent bilateral eye damage during a neck surgery at Gwinnett Medical Center in November 2014.  Ms. Johnson was referred to a Gwinnett surgeon to perform a neck surgery in the prone position, meaning that the operation was performed with the patient lying face-down.  After Ms. Johnson was intubated and anesthetized, her body was flipped over and antiseptic skin prep solutions were applied to the back of her neck to pre-emptively sterilize the incision site.  These antiseptics included “Hibiclens” and “Chloraprep”, which both contain the active ingredient “chlorhexidine gluconate,” which causes severe damage to the eyes and mucosal tissues of the body if it is allowed to enter.  Chlorhexadine gluconate binds to proteins in mucosal tissues of the body, so it becomes impossible to remediate its effects after remaining for more than a few minutes.  Undetected by the anesthesia team or any other person in the operating room, the skin prep chemicals containing chlorhexidine seeped down the back of Rosalind’s neck to her face and into her eyes at the beginning of the surgery.

During an invasive neck surgery with a general anesthetic, the anesthesia team, consisting of an anesthesiologist and a nurse anesthetist, administers anesthesia and is responsible for eye protection.  The legal standard of care requires the anesthesia team tape the eyes tightly closed.  They also must watch the patient carefully to ensure that no skin prep chemicals get near the eyes.  The nurse anesthetist has primary control of the patient, while the anesthesiologist is the doctor that oversees and supervises the nurse anesthetist during the surgery.  Under Georgia law, an anesthesiologist can simultaneously supervise up to 4 different operating rooms, employing 4 different nurse anesthetists, but the anesthesiologist must be vigilant to ensure that his or her nurse subordinates know what they are doing and do the job correctly.

medical-malpractice-300x200When people entrust their well-being to medical providers, they expect that the care they receive will be competent and will adequately identify and address any health issues they might have. It is a sad fact, however, that medical providers do not always provide sufficient care, and patients unexpectedly become the victims of medical malpractice. If you suffered harm due to inadequate or negligent medical care and wish to pursue a claim against your care provider, it is essential to choose an experienced Georgia medical malpractice attorney who will aggressively advocate on your behalf.

There are several factors you should consider in determining how to select the medical malpractice attorney that is best suited to represent you in your pursuit of damages. Generally, it is better to retain an attorney who has substantial experience litigating medical malpractice cases and understands the nuances and intricacies that come with such cases. Thus, a good question to ask a potential attorney is how many medical malpractice cases he or she has handled, and what percentage of his or her practice is devoted to medical malpractice. It is also important to ask questions about the specific circumstances surrounding your harm, and what damages you may realistically hope to recover. A capable medical malpractice attorney will be able to accurately assess your case and manage your expectations regarding its value. Additionally, it is important to ask questions that provide insight into the attorney’s demeanor and personality, to ensure that you feel comfortable with the attorney on a personal level. Continue reading

Medical malpractice cases filed in Georgia usually must be filed within two years of the date of harm caused by the injury. While in many cases the date of the injury is easily identifiable, the date of the injury caused by malpractice may be disputed in some cases.

In a recent case, the Court of  Appeals of Georgia held that where a misdiagnosis leads to a second more serious illness, the date of the injury is the date when symptoms of the second illness begin to appear, not the date of the misdiagnosis. If you were injured in Georgia due to a misdiagnosis, you should consult an experienced Georgia personal injury lawyer that specializes in malpractice to discuss your options for seeking damages from the responsible parties.

Factual Background

Reportedly, the Plaintiff’s deceased Wife sought treatment from Dr. V.S., a gynecologist, due to abnormal bleeding and a tumor in her uterus. Dr. V.S. referred Wife to Dr. J.H. who evaluated Wife and determined there was a very low chance the tumor was cancerous, which Dr. V.S. took to mean the manner in which the uterus was removed did not matter. In December 2013, Dr. V.S. removed Wife’s uterus via a robotic hysterectomy, which morcellated, or cut up, the uterus and tumor rather than removing them whole. Subsequently, an analysis of the tissue revealed that the tumor was cancerous, but CT scans at that time did not indicate any cancer. In October 2014, however, a scan revealed the presence of abdominal tumors, indicating that the cancer had returned. Allegedly, the morcellating caused cancer that was previously confined to the uterus, to spread throughout Wife’s abdominal cavity. Wife subsequently died of metastatic cancer on May 19, 2015.

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