Medical Malpractice

Dr. Jayant Patel

This Surgeon Spent His Entire Career as a Defendant in Court

Almost as soon as Dr. Jayant Patel’s medical career began, colleagues questioned his surgical skills. Complaints of gross incompetence and negligence ignited inquiries from medical authorities, causing Dr. Patel’s license to be restricted in the state of Oregon in 2000. He then moved to New York, where after a short time, medical authorities pressured him to surrender his medical license in that state for reasons of professional incompetence in 2001.

Dr. David Arndt

Surgeon Sneaks out of Surgery…to Run an Errand!

In 2002, a patient was lying face down on an operating table with an open incision in his back, about three-quarters of the way through an intensive 6-hour-long spinal surgery being performed by Dr. David Arndt at Mount Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, Massachusetts. During the surgery, Dr. Arndt repeatedly asked one nurse if she could find out if his paycheck had arrived.

Physician Assistant Medical Malpractice

Are PAs More Liable to Commit Medical Malpractice?

The second-largest malpractice award in US history involved a PA who misdiagnosed cerebellar stroke as sinusitis in a man at a hospital ED in 2000. The 44-year-old mechanic entered the hospital with a headache, nausea, dizziness, confusion, and double vision. He had a history of hypertension, diabetes, and elevated cholesterol and had a family history of stroke. The PA ordered blood tests and CT scans, which were approved by the ED physician. Two CT scans came back negative for stroke, so the PA diagnosed sinusitis, prescribed a painkiller and an antibiotic, and discharged the patient. The next day, the man awoke with a severe headache, slurred speech, nausea, confusion, and trouble walking. A new CT scan showed that he had suffered a stroke. A shunt was inserted into his brain, but the damage was irreversible. The man was left a paraplegic. During an investigation, lawyers found out that the PA was unlicensed and had failed the state licensure test for PAs 4 times. The ED physician claimed that he assumed the PA was licensed and that he didn’t need to redo the history and examination on the man. In 2007, a jury awarded the man $217 million, including $100 million in punitive damages.

Dr. James C. Burt

The “Love Surgeon” Was Nothing but a Brutal Butcher

“Women are structurally inadequate for intercourse. This is a pathological condition amenable by surgery,” so claimed Dr. James C. Burt, a gynecologist and obstetrician, in his 1975 book, Surgery of Love.

Unfortunately, for many patients, Dr. Burt’s genital reconstruction typically resulted in the exact opposite effect he proclaimed his procedures would have on them. Most of his patients suffered several side effects, including sexual dysfunction because of pain during intercourse, infection, and the need for corrective surgery after undergoing Dr. Burt’s bizarre medical procedures.

Dr. Allan Zarkin

Allan Zarkin

Back in 1999, Dr. Allan Zarkin, a Manhattan obstetrician, performed a Caesarian section to deliver the first child of his patient, Dr. Liana Gedz, a dentist. Gedz had every reason to trust her physician. Zarkin had coached Gedz through 7 months of prenatal care, and a strong doctor-patient relationship developed into a strong friendship. It was the kind of bond that led Gedz to invite Zarkin to spend summer nights with her and her husband at their country home in East Northport, Long Island.

How to Choose an Attorney

How to Choose an Attorney

Having an attorney you can work with is essential for physicians today. Its not easy to choose an attorney. With the complexity of law and the specialty and subspecialty areas for attorneys, it can be an intimidating task to search for a good lawyer. Sometimes a general practice attorney wont be sufficient. We need a real estate attorney to buy or sell a home or business, a business attorney to help hire a new partner, a tax attorney for tax matters, etc. Just like needing a neurological surgeon to perform brain surgery rather than a hematologist, you will need different types of lawyers to service different aspects of the law.

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