June 12, 2009
Donald Brown and Mark Hammond successfully defended a Louisville bariatric surgeon in this medical malpractice trial in Jefferson County, KY. Plaintiff maintained that the surgeon wrongfully caused the death of her husband by failing to order Heparin post-operatively after a vertical banded gastroplasty procedure. The decedent’s death resulted from the sudden onset of a pulmonary embolus five days after the bariatric procedure. Plaintiff sought approximately $2 million in damages. Brown and Hammond defended by submitting medical proof that the physician’s use of sequential compression devices, when combined with early ambulation and T.E.D. hose, had been shown to be as effective as Heparin in preventing pulmonary embolus at the time of the procedure. Defendant’s proof also indicated that no form of prophylaxis had been shown to prevent sudden death from pulmonary embolus in the morbidly obese after bariatric surgery. Defense experts included a vascular surgeon from the Jobst Vascular Institute and bariatric surgeons from the University of Washington and New Jersey Bariatrics. The jury agreed with the defendant and found in his favor.