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Liver surgery med-mal case settled

This was a wrongful death case resulting from alleged medical negligence arising out of a liver biopsy. The plaintiff’s decedent was a 48-year-old female admitted to a local hospital with a history of acute hepatitis and sickle cell disease. A liver biopsy was scheduled and the hepatologist performing the liver biopsy was unaware that another physician had initiated subcutaneous Heparin injections the day prior to the liver biopsy. After the liver biopsy, the plaintiff’s decedent experienced a hemorrhage and died from complications of the hemorrhage.
The defense contended that the subcutaneous Heparin injections were not sufficient to cause a hemorrhage and that bleeding is an inherent risk when a biopsy is done on a severely diseased liver. Negligence was contested as was the plaintiff’s decedent’s life expectancy given her diseased liver and sickle cell disease. The plaintiff’s experts opined that she had a life expectancy of 10 to 20 years and after that, she may have been a candidate for a liver transplant. She was survived by a husband and teenage daughter.
Type of Action: Medical malpractice
Type of Injuries: Death
Name of Case: Confidential
Court/Case #: Confidential
Special Damages: Funeral bill and future lost wages of approximately $200,000.00
Verdict/Settlement: Settlement
Amount: $800,000.00
Date: July 10, 2006
Most Helpful Experts: Dr. Howard Worman, Hepatology; Dr. John Feigert, Hematology; Dr. Joel Greenson, Pathology; Dr. Robert Cook, Economics
Insurance Carrier: Confidential
Plaintiff’s Attorney: Michael W. Lantz, Craig B. Davis, Richmond

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