Many Chicago residents have suffered broken bones. Although a broken bone can be painful, it is usually not serious or life-threatening. However, one man went through multiple surgeries and amputations after his ankle was broken and his toes became infected. He filed a medical malpractice suit and was recently awarded $9.1 million.
The 45-year-old former public safety dispatcher from New York was walking to work in October 2004 when he fell on some steps. He first received treatment from one doctor, but he began to experience pain in his little toe. He sought treatment from another doctor, who performed multiple surgeries on the toe before it had to be amputated.
After the surgery, another toe became infected. The toe was later amputated, but the pain persisted. In 2009, the man underwent another amputation. This time, his entire leg below the knee was removed. Two months later, the man suffered yet another infection, and a different doctor removed the rest of the leg. At this time, the man was disabled and could no longer work.
The man received $6 million for pain and suffering and nearly $3 million for lost wages and medical expenses. His wife was also given $350,000.
Doctors are humans just like all of us and that means they can make errors. However, the doctors involved performed 12 surgeries in all. This gave them multiple opportunities to diagnose the root cause of the man’s persistent pain and recurring infections. The misdiagnosis and negligent medical treatment caused the man to lose his leg over a broken ankle. The man is devastated over his loss and while the money won’t correct his medical issues, it will hopefully offer some solace.
The Buffalo News, “Former Tonawanda dispatcher awarded $9.1 million in medical malpractice suit” James Staas, Feb. 17, 2014