James Grohmann of O’Bryan, Brown & Toner, PLLC, successfully defended a general surgeon in a wrongful death claim tried this November in Louisville, Kentucky.
Plaintiffs alleged that the surgeon delayed in the diagnosis of an anastomotic leak, after having undergone a colon resection 5 days earlier. When the diagnosis was made, the infectious process was such that the patient survived only on life support for another day. The patient’s estate and surviving 6-year-old son sought over $5 million for pain and suffering, destruction of earning capacity, and loss of parental consortium.
Grohmann countered with proof that the patient was progressing as would be expected following his initial colon surgery and labs suggestive of an infectious process were likely secondary to a hospital acquired pneumonia. They also developed proof that the anastomotic leak was an acute event, and the surgeon’s intervention was in fact timely.
Upon considering the matter, the jury agreed that the surgeon had acted appropriately and entered a defense verdict in his favor.