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$500,000 Awarded to Patient for Doctor's Defamatory Remarks During Surgery

Washington, DC: An unidentified patient in Virginia has been awarded $500,000 by a jury hearing his medical malpractice lawsuit which claims his anesthesiologist made defamatory comments while he was under sedation for a colonoscopy. The award includes $200,000 in punitive damages.

The unidentified plaintiff, referred to as DB, had left his smart phone on record so he could ensure he got his doctor' post surgical instructions, according to the Washington Post. However, during the procedure his trousers were placed under him, which resulted in the inadvertent recording, court papers indicate.

When DB listened to the recording on his way home from the surgery, he discovered Dr. Tiffany Ingham mocking and disparaging him. Among the comments was a referral to a rash on the plaintiff' penis, which Ingham incorrectly suggested indicated syphilis and tuberculosis. (The jury awarded $50,000 in compensatory damages for defamation for the doctor' remarks about each of these diseases, and another $200,000 for overall medical malpractice.) Ingham also allegedly said she was going to note in the man' chart that he had hemorrhoids, which he didn't.

DB also sued a gastroenterologist, Soloman Shah, who, while present for the procedure, did not directly participate in most of the commentary by Ingham. That portion of the case was dismissed.

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Published on Jun-24-15


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