Attorneys usually litigate the cases against medical professionals and hospitals who exhibit negligence and cause harm to patients. Recently, an attorney who practiced medical malpractice law became the plaintiff in a case which rendered a large verdict. Readers in New Mexico may be interested in the details of the case.

The man first presented at a local hospital late at night in 2012, after complaining of a headache, disorientation, vomiting and a painful, stiff neck. He and his wife were first seen by a physician’s assistant who was known to the couple, and diagnosed the problem as dehydration due to the 82-degree day the city had just experienced. The man was given fluids and pain medication and discharged from the hospital.

According to the lawsuit, the man was at work the following day when his secretary heard strange and alarming noises coming from his office. She found him unresponsive in his chair, and an ambulance was summoned. Documents for the case relate that his heart stopped twice before the ambulance could get him to the local trauma center.

At the hospital, physicians discovered that the man was suffering from bleeding in the brain. Upon review of his previous symptoms, doctors determined that it constituted a “warning leak.” This could have alerted doctors to the condition and allowed them to diagnose it further and try to prevent it.

The man now has an extremely limited short-term memory, and can typically remember information from his past, but is not able to learn and store new information. He also requires 24-hour care to ensure he does not hurt himself or get lost. The parties in the lawsuit reached a settlement after discussing the case with the Circuit Judge assigned to hear the arguments. The judge felt that the hospital did not have any good arguments or witnesses to present and cautioned representatives that a lengthy trial might not end well for the facility.

The award of $20 million is a victory for those with similar cases of medical malpractice. Many in New Mexico who have suffered through a similar situation reach out to an experienced attorney who is experienced in this field of law. An attorney will be able to discuss the various legal options available, based on his or her client’s unique case.

Source: chicagolawbulletin.com, “$20M settlement for lawyer’s stroke“, Lauraann Woodlaw, Nov. 22, 2016