Duffy & Duffy PLLC Obtains a Verdict of $3.86 Million Following a…

A 47-year-old married father of three was granted a summary judgement after an M.D.’s negligence lead to a misdiagnosis. The plaintiff, who worked as a court officer, had been working on the ceiling in his basement and suddenly became dizzy. This proceeded by nausea, vomiting, a brief period of left-sided numbness and weakness, as well as garbled speech. After crawling up the basement stairs, the man was able to call his sister who then contacted the fire department. Emergency service brought the man to St. Joseph’s Hospital, a New York State Designated Stroke Center.

This man’s complaints of dizziness, nausea and vomiting were noted in the ambulance report, along with the history of a left-sided numbness and weakness; however, the emergency room personnel did not give that history proper medical attention. Such complaints in a patient who had been working with his head and neck leaning backwards to work on a ceiling should have been recognized as a likely vascular incident including vertebral dissection. This would have required an investigative work-up for a transient ischemic attack (TIA). Instead, the emergency room physician, Michael Mendola, M.D., simply attributed the condition to vertigo, sinusitis and dehydration, releasing the patient home several hours later.

Some 8 days later the man again experienced significant nausea, dizziness and left-sided numbness and was brought back to St. Joseph Hospital. There he was now diagnosed with a stroke to his left cerebellum and brain stem. The stroke, as well as the TIA he experienced 8 days earlier, were caused by blood clots from a vertebral artery dissection. Had a proper diagnostic work-up been timely performed during the first visit to St. Joseph Hospital, the vertebral artery dissection would have been diagnosed and treated with anticoagulant medication thereby preventing the formation of the blood clot that caused the subsequent stroke. As a result of the stroke, he has been left disabled with impaired vision and limited use of his left arm. The man returned to work for two years, but due to his inability to physically and mentally keep up with the demands of his job, was forced to stop working.

After a 12-day trial in Nassau County Supreme Court conducted by James LiCalzi, Esq., a jury awarded a total of $3,866,055 which included reimbursement for past and future loss of earnings, loss of pension retirement income, past and future pain and suffering and loss of spousal services.

Plaintiff is represented by Duffy & Duffy PLLC, a New York-based law firm with extensive experience in medical negligence, malpractice and personal injury. To learn more about Duffy & Duffy PLLC, please contact:
Duffy & Duffy, PLLC
1370 RXR Plaza Uniondale, NY 11556
Phone: 516-394-4200

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