Cooper Schall & Levy discusses a recent case where $8.5 million was awarded to a couple in a medical malpractice lawsuit.

$8.5 Million Verdict Awarded to Couple in Medical Malpractice Suit

Medical malpractice injuries often have devastating and lasting consequences. If your health has suffered because a treating medical professional failed to treat you at a standard accepted by other similarly situated health care professionals, then you have a legal right to seek compensation for the damage done by his or her negligence. Medical malpractice victims are entitled to compensation for expenses related to the injury that was the result of the negligent treatment. This means that the victim can recover compensation for both past and future medical expenses, including prescription medication and physical therapy. The victim may also seek compensatory damages for pain and suffering. 

The Couple’s Medical Malpractice Suit

In a recent medical malpractice lawsuit, Germansville couple Robert Kline and his wife recovered an award of $8.5 million dollars against St. Luke’s University Health Network. A Lehigh County jury found that not one, but two of the doctors at St. Luke’s University Health Network had failed to communicate to Mr. Kline that he potentially had a tumor in his bladder.

In 2015, Mr. Kline went to the Allentown campus of St. Luke’s due to pain in his abdomen and right side. Additionally, he had been suffering from urinary problems. This was all explained when a scan revealed kidney stones. The image also showed what had the potential to be a tumor. Court records show that radiologist Dr. Pratik Shukla confirmed that the scan showed a potential tumor in Mr. Kline’s bladder. Neither of Mr. Kline’s treating doctors, Dr. Nguyen and Dr. Stromski, ordered an ultrasound of the bladder after receiving the scan results. Furthermore, they failed to explain the scan to Mr. Kline nor did they let Mr. Kline’s primary care doctor know of the scan results. There was no plan established for follow-up treatment nor were there any referrals to specialists for follow-up studies.

In 2017, Mr. Kline had an ultrasound of his bladder done and it was revealed that he had multiple tumors as well as bladder cancer. Court records reveal that the tumor in the 2015 scan was the same tumor that appeared in the 2017 scan. Mr. Kline asserted that Dr. Nguyen and Dr. Stromski’s failure to make an earlier diagnosis or even bring the potential tumor to his attention not only caused him physical pain, but also caused him emotional pain and substantially lowered his life expectancy. Also, Mr. Kline asserted that the doctors’ oversight ended up requiring him to undergo surgery to remove his bladder and prostate as well as go through chemotherapy.

The jury, which returned its verdict back in August of this year, awarded Mr. Kline and his wife $10 million dollars. They also held, however, that Mr. Kline was 15% responsible. This means the awarded was reduced accordingly and the award came out to be $8.5 million. St. Luke’s denied all allegations of negligence in court documents. The hospital expressed its disappointment in the jury’s conclusion and deemed the award to be a “shockingly high sum.” The St. Luke’s spokesman was unsure as to whether the hospital would appeal the verdict. 

Medical Malpractice Attorneys

Medical malpractice forever alters the lives of the victims. You go to your doctor to help you get better. A doctor’s negligence is not only a betrayal of the trust you have bestowed upon them, but it is a violation of their professional duty to you. If you have been the victim of medical malpractice, the trusted attorneys at Cooper Schall & Levy are here to hold the responsible parties accountable as well as zealously advocate for your right to full and fair compensation. Contact us today.