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VERDICTS BY CATEGORY

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plaintiff contended that because of the very small size of the S2 pedicle bone, the defendant should have performed an open procedure. There was no evidence that the defendant used negligent surgical technique.

The plaintiff contended that he will permanently suffer particularly severe pain and require a cane to walk. The defendant contended that the minimally invasive option was an appropriate exercise of medical judg- ment and that the injury to the S1 nerve root was a known complication.

The jury found that the defendant was not negligent.

REFERENCE

Plaintiff’s neurosurgeon expert: Brian Holmes, MD from Hagerstown, MD. Defendant’s neurosurgeon expert: George DiGiacinto,MD from New York, NY.

Bjorkund vs. Shiau. Index no. 103946/08; Judge Jo- seph S. Maltese, 04-13-11.

Attorney for defendant: Louis E. Jakub, Jr. of Garson DeCorato & Cohen, LLP in New York, NY.

DEFENDANT’S VERDICT

Medical Malpractice – Surgery – Alleged premature extubation following successful bypass surgery – Alleged negligent reintubation – Airway stenosis – Permanent need for tracheostomy tube.

cheal stricture developed and that despite surgery, the stricture recurred. The plaintiff contended that he required a tracheotomy and will permanently require a tracheostomy tube.

Richmond County, NY

The plaintiff, who had undergone a successful CABG, contended that when attempts were made to extubate the patient, he became very combative, reflecting that the attempt was premature. The defendant sedated the patient after several attempts and ultimately extubated him on the fifth day following surgery. The plaintiff maintained that the patient’s combativeness factor should have underscored that he was not ready to have the tube removed.

The defendant contended that it was important to re- move the tube as soon as possible after the coronary surgery in order to prevent lung damage. The defen- dant maintained that a permissible medical judg- ment was made. The defendant also denied that the tracheal stricture was caused by trauma during the reintubation and contended that it is a known com- plication of prolonged intubation.

The jury found for the defendant.

REFERENCE

The plaintiff contended that once the tube was re- moved, the patient experienced severe breathing difficulties, and the tube was required to be immedi- ately reinserted. The plaintiff maintained that the plaintiff suffered a very significant trauma, that a tra-

Passanisi vs. Staten Island University Hospital. Index no. 104443/07; Judge Joseph S. Maltese, 12-07-10.

Attorney for defendant: Louis E. Jakub, Jr. of Garson DeCorato & Cohen, LLP in New York, NY.

CONSTRUCTION NEGLIGENCE

$165,000 TOTAL RECOVERY

Construction Negligence – Failure of utility to properly secure construction plates – Host driver fails to avoid gap between plates and slides back into it when he unsuccessfully attempts to accelerate out – Incident occurs when plaintiff is being driven home from treatment of a longstanding preexisting back condition – Cervical compression fracture – Several cervical and lumbar bulges.

Kings County, NY

The plaintiff front seat van passenger, who was being driven home from her physician where she underwent treatment for a long-standing back condition, contended that the defendant utility negligently failed to secure two road construction plates when road excavation was not occurring. The plaintiff contended that as a result, a gap formed between the plates, and that the co-

defendant driver negligently failed to observe it. The plaintiff contended that the front of the van drove into the gap and that the driver tried to accelerate out of the gap, but instead pushed the plate away resulting in the van falling back into the excavation. The plaintiff indicated that the plates were “ajar,” and she saw the gap a few seconds before the impact.

An independent witness testified the hole was about five to six feet deep. The incident occurred during a moderate rain and moderate traffic conditions. Con- Ed contended it had nothing to do with the excava- tion site and merely put its plates over the excavation at the request of NYPD after the accident. Although under subpoena, the defendant driver failed to appear at trial.

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New York Jury Verdict Review & Analysis

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