A 10-year-old girl had rods surgically implanted in her spine in 2010 to treat scoliosis that were allegedly improperly implanted and thereby led to problems with her limbs, bowel, and bladder that were not timely diagnosed or properly treated. As a result, she became a quadriplegic.
A Detroit medical malpractice jury determined on July 2, 2018, after a two-week trial, that the defendant hospital and defendant surgeon had breached the standard of care and that their breaches proximately caused the catastrophic injuries to the girl. The Detroit medical malpractice jury determined that $135 million was fair compensation for the now 17-year-old’s damages, after two-and-a-half hours of deliberations.
The plaintiff’s Michigan medical malpractice lawsuit alleged that it was proper to use rods and screws to straighten the little girl’s curved spine but the manner in which the rods and screws were implanted was incorrect, causing pressure on her spinal cord. Instead of promptly removing the surgical hardware to relieve pressure on the girl’s spinal cord, the defendant surgeon failed to address the issue and went on vacation, twice, shortly after the surgical procedure. The delay in appropriate treatment led to the girl developing numbness in her arms and legs, and becoming paralyzed along with loss of control of her bowel and bladder. The plaintiff’s medical malpractice lawyer told the Michigan medical malpractice jury that the defendant surgeon had abandoned his patient.
It was not until ten days later that the hardware was finally removed but by that time the girl had become a permanent quadriplegic and suffered permanent loss of bowel and bladder control.
The defense argued to the Michigan medical malpractice jury that the girl developed a blood clot that caused her injuries that they clould not have prevented and for which they were not responsible. The plaintiff’s medical malpractice lawyer argued to the jury that no MRI or other medical tests supported the defense theory of a blood clot causing the devastating injuries.
One of the plaintiff’s medical malpractice lawyers said after the verdict, “A Wayne County jury rendered the largest verdict in the United States for a single medical malpractice case.” Another medical malpractice lawyer for the plaintiff stated, “For seven years the family has been waiting, hoping and not knowing what was going to happen. She’ll have enough money to get her catheter changed for the rest of her life. That’s it. It is going to be difficult but it will make it a little bit easier. But that’s all it can do.”
If you or a loved one suffered injuries or other harms as a result of surgical malpractice in Michigan or in another U.S. state, you should promptly seek the legal advice of a Michigan medical malpractice attorney (or a medical malpractice attorney in your state) who may investigate your surgical malpractice claim for you and represent you in a surgical medical malpractice case, if appropriate.
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