STATE/COUNTY: Florida/Broward County Courthouse
DATE OF VERDICT: January 12, 2009
NAME OF CASE: Lisa Strong and Donald Strong v. South Broward Hospital District d/b/a Memorial Hospital West, Inphynet South Broward, Inc.,Laurentina Kocik, M.D., Inpatient Clinical Solutions, Inc.,Jason Strong, M.D., Rajkumar Nebhrajani, M.D., LLC and Rajkumar Nebhrajani, M.D.
COUNSEL FOR PLAINTIFFS: Searcy, Denney, Scarola, Barnhart & Shipley, P.A., W. Palm Beach, FL; Kelley Uustal, P.A., Ft. Lauderdale, FL
COUNSEL FROM McGRANE, NOSICH & GANZ, P.A.: James J. Nosich, Esq. and Marc P. Ganz, Esq.
AGE/SEX/OCCUPATION OF PLAINTIFF: 40 year old female - Mary Kay Cosmetics
CLIENT OF McGRANE, NOSICH & GANZ: Emergency Department Physician, Laurentina Kocik, M.D.
CAUSE OF ACTION: Medical negligence. Failure to treat kidney stone. Plaintiff sustained a quadruple amputation due to a kidney stone which was alleged to be untimely diagnosed and treated. The kidney stone caused a complete obstruction and infection in the kidney leading to septic shock. In an effort to fight off the effects of the shock, the body shunted the blood away from the extremities to the heart. Additionally, medications were provided to enhance vasoconstriction at the extremities to maintain an adequate blood pressure. The effects of these medications caused ischemia leading to tissue death. The Plaintiff alleged that Dr. Kocik, the emergency department physician, failed to recognize the classic signs of a kidney stone which led to a misdiagnosis causing shock. The Plaintiff went on to allege that there was mis-communication between the emergency department physician and admitting physician causing the admitting physician to not aggressively treat the patient. It was also alleged that when the surgeon arrived several hours after the patient was admitted to the ICU he performed the wrong surgery by operating on the abdomen instead of obtaining a CT scan to identify the kidney stone. After the abdominal surgery which was negative, the CT scan was finally ordered and the stone was identified and removed. The amputations occurred approximately 30 days after admission while the Plaintiff remained in the hospital.
DAMAGES: It was alleged that the failure to timely diagnose a kidney stone and the failure to properly manage shock led to ischemia in the extremities causing an unnecessary quadruple amputation. The Plaintiff asked for $74 million at the time of trial including $7,000,000.00 in projected economic costs.
VERDICT: Defense verdict for all Defendants.
COMMENTS BY JIM NOSICH: It was initially thought that sympathy for the Plaintiff would override any analysis of the facts by the jury which may lead to a defense verdict.