Infant's brain damage not preventable, OB-GYN claimed
|Failure to Test, Medical Malpractice - Failure to Diagnose, Medical Malpractice - OB-GYN, Negligence - Negligent Supervision, Medical Malpractice - Brain Injuries|
|Isabellis Marmol an Infant, by Her m/n/g, Lucy Acevedo v. Kimberly Mudge M.D., & Lutheran Medical Center, No. 350259/08|
|Bronx Supreme, NY|
|John A. Barone
- Randy B. Nassau; Fitzgerald & Fitzgerald; Yonkers, NY, for Isabellis Marmol
- Howard Cohen; OB-GYN; Glens Falls, NY called by: Randy Nassau
- Joseph Carfi M.D.; Physical Rehabilitation; Great Neck, NY called by: Randy Nassau
- Michael Soudry MBA; Economics; New York, NY called by: Randy Nassau
- Daniel Adler M.D; Pediatric Neurology; Ridgewood, NJ called by: Randy Nassau
- Andrew S. Garson; Garson DeCorato & Cohen LLP; New York, NY, for Kimberly Mudge, Lutheran Medical Center
- Jonathan Davis M.D.; Pediatrics; Boston, MA called by: Andrew Garson
- Adiel Fleischer M.D.; OB-GYN; Great Neck, NY called by: Andrew Garson
- Medical Liability Mutual Insurance Co. for both defendants
On July 25, 2001, plaintiff Isabellis Marmol was born. The delivery was performed after 31 weeks of gestation. Doctors suspected that Isabellis was suffering sepsis, and they subsequently found evidence of chorioamnionitis: an infection of the amniotic fluid and the placental membrane. Isabellis' mother, Lucy Acevedo, claimed that the chorioamnionitis was a result of an undiagnosed infection of her urinary tract, and she contended that it caused a premature birth and damage of Isabellis' brain.
Acevedo, acting as Isabellis' parent and natural guardian, sued her treating obstetrician, Dr. Kimberly Mudge, and Mudge's employer, Lutheran Medical Center. Acevedo alleged that Mudge failed to detect the underlying infection, that the failure constituted malpractice and that Lutheran Medical Center failed to properly supervise Mudge.
Plaintiff's counsel claimed that a urinalysis performed in June 2001 demonstrated white blood cells, bacteria and leukocytes--indicators of an infection. He contended that an infection was present, but that Mudge did not detect it. He claimed that the infection eventually invaded Acevedo's uterus and caused a preterm birth. He also noted that Mudge performed four follow-up examinations of Acevedo between the urinalysis and Isabellis' delivery. He contended that Mudge, then a second-year resident of the hospital, was not sufficiently experienced to detect the urinary-tract infection or to understand its potentially dangerous manifestations. He argued that Mudge should have obtained a culture of Acevedo's urine, that antibiotics should have been prescribed and that Acevedo's condition should have been closely monitored. He also argued that Mudge should have been more closely supervised.
Defense counsel contended that the urinalysis's results were tainted by a contaminated specimen. He claimed that the chorioamnionitis developed within hours or days of Isabellis' birth, and he contended that Mudge could not have detected or prevented it.
Defense counsel further claimed that Isabellis' premature birth was not result of chorioamnionitis. He noted that Acevedo had given birth to an anencephalic, or partially brainless, infant some 12 months prior to Isabellis' birth, and he argued that that event increased her risk of premature deliveries.
Defense counsel also noted that Acevedo did not seek prenatal care until the middle portion of her pregnancy, and he claimed that she was fully monitored and referred to a high-risk maternal fetal specialist thereafter.
The defense's expert obstetrician opined that a urinary-tract infection could not have remained asymptomatic for seven weeks and still have caused a premature birth.
Isabellis sustained damage of her brain. She suffers cerebral palsy and spastic quadriplegia. She is functionally impaired in all aspects of her life and requires special education with a personal aide. She also undergoes all interventional therapies, but she will never be able to work, and she will require lifelong custodial care. A vocational-rehabilitation expert opined that Isabellis will require a total of $20,000 to $26,000 annually for physical, occupational and speech-language therapy; $96,000 a year for residential care; and $3,000 a year for special equipment. Isabellis' mother sought recovery of those expenses and damages for Isabellis' past and future pain and suffering.
The jury rendered a defense verdict.
This report is based on information that was provided by defense counsel. Plaintiff's counsel did not respond to the reporter's phone calls.