Final Verdict: $7 Million After Device Misuse Causes Death

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Final Verdict: $7 Million After Device Misuse Causes Death

Medical devices include a broad range of tools, technology, and materials intended to help save lives, simplify surgery, and improve patient quality of life. However, the approval mechanism for medical devices is slightly different than that for prescription drugs, and accordingly, their use can be controversial. There is less regulatory oversight for the use of tools by a surgeon during a procedure than for a new “miracle” drug. When patients are harmed due to the use of a medical device, there is Final Verdict: $7 Million After Device Misuse Causes Deatha potential medical malpractice claim.

Malpractice claims resulting from the use of medical devices can come in a variety of presentations. When the use of a medical device is the result of a poor or inaccurate diagnosis, the blame lies squarely with the diagnosing physician. In other cases, the diagnosis may be correct, but the use of the device may not be consistent with that diagnosis, or it may be contraindicated for that particular patient due to other facts. A physician may use a medical device but do so improperly, causing unforeseen but preventable injuries. Finally, even if a physician uses the device correctly, the device itself may malfunction. This can result in a claim against the device manufacturer if the risk was not disclosed by the manufacturer, or against the physician if the risk was known to the physician but not disclosed to the patient.

Sadly, many medical devices have led to serious harm or death for patients across the United States. When medical devices are given to patients to be used, the rate of misuse can be extremely high; one study found that the Epi-Pen, used for the treatment of allergic reaction, was used properly by patients in only one time out of five. Vaginal mesh implants, once touted as a highly promising benefit for treating pelvic organ prolapse, has been the cause of many lawsuits and significant injury. Cohen & Cohen

In 2013, 55-year-old accounts manager Karen Ebersole experienced a bifurcation aneurysm of the rightmost artery leading to the brain. She was sedated and placed under anesthesia. In a brain aneurysm, the blood often cannot clot quickly enough and so can result in irreparable harm. To treat the aneurysm, metal coils were inserted into the vessel to slow blood flow and induce clotting. A balloon catheter was used to hold the coils in place. Unfortunately, the balloon catheter punctured the right middle cerebral artery, causing a brain bleed. Karen passed away three days later.

Karen’s estate, administered by her two adult children, sued for medical malpractice and wrongful death. During the week-long trial, the doctor who had performed the procedure, neuroradiologist Richard Pegolizzi, attempted to blame anesthesiologist Dung Nguyen, arguing that he had used insufficient anesthesia and Karen had moved during the surgery. However, Dr. Nguyen brought evidence showing that Karen’s head had been taped down during the procedure and could not have moved. 

Experts during the trial testified that the balloon catheter had been misused. Dr. Pegolizzi had inflated it too much and it had caused the brain bleed. The Virginia jury, with the expertise of the medical malpractice attorneys, agreed, finding in favor of the estate and awarding $7 million in damages.

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Cohen & Cohen has an  impeccable Client Satisfaction Rating with hundreds of
5 STAR Reviews. We are among the best-rated firms in the areas we serve.

L Proctor
August 30, 2022.
My experience with Cohen &Cohen was beyond my expectations. Jill did an amazing job with negotiating on my behalf and got me way more money than I anticipated. Thank you for having my back.
Ebony Stoutmiles
June 23, 2022.
To say that I am happy with the outcome of my case is the understatement of the century! Jill Stanley is a BEAST at what she does. That is the only way to explain it. She takes no prisoners. She and her team are very skilled and knowledgeable. I am so happy I trusted them to do their job and rolled with Jill's suggestions. I would choose Jill again 100 times. She settled my case for more than I imagined I would receive. I was literally in tears. It is the best feeling to know my pain isn't for naught. Wayne Cohen and Kristopher Yorke were nothing short of amazing. They have the patience of saints. I'm 100% certain that I got on their last nerves with my frustration and tears at every other call I had with them. Being in pain and wanting to just be able to heal was all I could focus on, but they helped me realize that I also had to focus on the bigger picture (the case) so I could put this piece behind me. As a high-strung individual with anxiety, it was hard for me to not worry and let them do their jobs, but they reassured me all of the time that they had this. To be injured before the start of the pandemic and have to receive regular, weekly treatment while others are able to stay home is anxiety inducing. I was in pain, I was anxious, and I was just hoping it all worked out. It more than worked out. I hope Jill, Siri, and Kris know how much their hard work and "hanging in there" meant to me. I am eternally grateful. I can't recommend you all enough. If you choose this law firm, you won't be sorry!
Beloved Temple
June 3, 2022.
I was very pleased with the handling of my case and settlement with Cohen& Cohen. I appreciate them, would highly recommend them.
willie howell
May 25, 2022.
COHEN & COHEN ARE THE BEST I WAS INVOLVED IN A REAR END CAR CRASH AND 2 YEARS LATER I HAVE RECEIVED MY SETTLEMENT I AM VERY EXCITED TO SAY BRYAN!!! IS THE MAN HE INSURED THEY WILL TAKE CARE OF ME AND THEY DID 100% ANY QUESTIONS I ASKED THEY WERE ANSWERED. Jill and SIRI WAS ALSO REMARKABLE AND SHOWED THEY REALLY CARED I RECOMMEND COHEN &COHEN TO ANYONE THEY ALSO MADE SURE I GOT MORE THAN EXPECTED WHICH WAS AMAZING I APPRECIATE YOU GUYS THANK U💯
Jose Rivera
May 25, 2022.
The legal team at cohen & cohen did a great job I really appreciate the hard work on gating my compensation in a fair amount of time. Special thanks to Kris for a wonderful job
Lea Harvey
May 25, 2022.
I had a great experience with the team at Cohen & Cohen. From my intake attorney, Adam, to the paralegal, Bryan, who worked with me regularly for months to document and prepare my case, to Jill, the attorney who secured my settlement, I feel fortunate to have had their representation and expertise on my side.
Cameron Galloway (HustleDaGod)
May 19, 2022.
Kris was phenomenal. Spectacular communication & knowledge in regards to my case. Would definitely return if I needed more legal services. 100% definitely recommend.

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