Surgeons are held to a high standard of care when treating patients. Patients and their families trust their doctors to adhere to the standard of care of a competent doctor in the same area of specialty. Unfortunately, not all doctors meet this standard at all times. A New York brain surgeon has been sued by three different women with spinal injuries for medical malpractice after multiple alleged surgical errors.
All three women have been diagnosed with Chiari malformation, a painful condition that occurs when brain tissue goes into the spine. Their suits accuse the surgeon of administering unnecessary medical treatment or providing them with substandard care that caused their conditions to worsen rather than improve. All of the women claim they suffer on a daily basis as a result of their procedures. They say they are unable to function and experience significant pain.
The surgeon has had issues with malpractice in the past. He was suspended in 2010 for being late to a procedure where the patient was already under anesthesia. He has also been sued over 20 times for malpractice-related issues.
In order to bring a successful medical malpractice lawsuit, a patient must show that the doctor owed a duty to the patient and breached that duty by acting negligently. In a medical malpractice case, negligence is typically proven by showing a deviation from the prevailing standard of care. The patient must also show that they suffered injury or a worsened medical condition as a result of their doctor's malpractice. If a patient can successfully prove all of these elements, they can recover damages from the doctor responsible for their pain and suffering.
Source: New York Daily News, "Three women slap tainted Long Island brain surgeon with malpractice suits in botched spinal operations," Dareh Gregorian, Oct. 30, 2016