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Partial Settlement of $2.2 Million - Neurosurgeon/Hospital Malpractice Resulting in Paralysis

Additional Confidential Settlement with Hospital

Neurosurgeon performed an anterior cervical diskectomy and fusion at spinal levels C4-5 and C5-6 on patient, age 52. Within two hours following surgery, the hospital nurses noted that patient was unable to move his legs and toes. The inability of a patient to move his legs or toes after cervical spine surgery is a medical emergency and requires an immediate work-up.

Plaintiffs alleged that the neurosurgeon was negligent in failing to order an MRI scan on an emergency basis to determine the cause of the paralysis. An MRI ultimately performed showed that, despite surgery, the spinal compression for which the surgery had been performed had not been relieved. Plaintiffs also alleged that the neurosurgeon was negligent in not performing an emergency decompression surgery to relieve compression that was now causing the patient's inability to move his legs.

Plaintiffs contended that the neurosurgeon's failure to perform an emergency decompression surgery caused the patient to suffer permanent incomplete quadriplegia. Patient is unable to walk and has very limited use of his upper extremities. Defendants contended that the neurosurgeon was not negligent the performance of the surgery or in providing care following the surgery. Defendants alleged that they did not commit any acts that caused damage.

Approximately eight months after suit was filed, at such time as the case had appeared on a court calendar with trial imminent, the case was settled for the sum of $2.2 million. Suit against the hospital, based on the failure of the nurses to take steps to obtain another physician to treat the patient in a timely and proper manner, was resolved pursuant to an agreement of confidentiality. No information regarding the terms of settlement may be disclosed.

Settlement Date: 4-10-02
In the State Court of Clayton County, Georgia
Counsel for Plaintiffs: Grant Law Office

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