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$62M Settlement Awarded in Medical Malpractice Lawsuit

This is a settlement for the Medical Malpractice lawsuit.

Los Angeles, CA: A 32-year old single mother has been awarded $62 million in damages settling her medical malpractice lawsuit she brought. In October 2009, Plaintiff Stacey Galette, a 34-year-old single mother, underwent surgery at Winthrop University Hospital as the result of an ectopic pregnancy, i.e. a pregnancy in which a fertilized egg remains in a woman' fallopian tube. Despite post-surgery complaints of extreme pain, fever and an abnormal heart rate, Galette was released from the hospital.

Three days later Galette returned to the hospital and was admitted, spending the next 73 days in intensive care. During this time she suffered cardiac arrest three times and underwent a colostomy and skin grafts. Galette also sustained significant hearing loss as a result of antibiotics she was given to control the infection. Doctors also had to amputate both of her feet, and eventually, each leg below the knee.

Galette sued Winthrop University Hospital and her treating physicians for medical malpractice, claiming the hospital staff departed from the acceptable standard of medical care. She alleged that during the surgery, her intestine was punctured, causing an infection, blood poisoning and gangrene. As a result of such extreme yet avoidable post-surgical complications she sustained devastating, life-altering injuries.

Defendants claimed the puncture in Galette 's intestine occurred after the procedure due to an underlying bowel condition. They argued that even if the puncture occurred during the procedure, it was a known risk of surgery and did not constitute malpractice. The defendants further contended that the single mother survived her ordeal due to their intervention and thus should have been thankful just to be alive.

The jury clearly rejected Defendants' affront, awarding Galette $62 million: $20 million for past pain and suffering; $38 million for future pain and suffering; and $4 million for medical expenses. The hospital has announced its intention to appeal the verdict.

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Published on Sep-11-14


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