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August 2019: Defense Verdict: Alleged Delayed Diagnosis of Potentially Fatal Aortic Dissection in Richmond

August 30, 2019

Christopher A. Terzian, Esq. obtained a defensed verdict in Supreme Court Richmond County in a case in which the plaintiff claimed that defendant doctor and hospital committed medical malpractice in the delayed diagnosis of a potentially fatal ascending aortic dissection. The plaintiff, a then 42 year-old retired man, arrived via ambulance to the ER at defendant hospital complaining of pain in his chest and abdomen, with difficulty breathing.  He claimed that physician who treated him at the hospital failed diagnosing his aortic dissection, a life threatening condition in which the wall of the aorta begins to tear and could lead to death if not treated promptly. The plaintiff claimed that due to the alleged malpractice, he suffered permanent injuries of right foot drop; memory loss; and neurological impairment.  Defense counsel argued that defendant doctor and the hospital timely diagnosed the aortic dissection.  Defense counsel further argued that the plaintiff's claimed injuries were unrelated to the care he received at defendant hospital. Upon Defense counsel’s cross examination, the plaintiff's expert conceded that all tests and exams the defendant doctor had ordered and performed yielded normal results, and had not revealed symptoms of aortic dissection. Plaintiff’s expert also acknowledged he erred in thinking that the aortic dissection had led to a rupture in the plaintiff's aorta. The jury rendered a verdict for the defense.

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