A man´s claim for paralysis due to medical negligence has been resolved at the Court of Common Pleas in Delaware County, PA, for $12.5 million.
On 17th June 2011, fifty-seven year old Kenneth Del Grosso from Upper Darby in Delaware County, PA, went to the Emergency Room of Delaware County Memorial Hospital complaining of a pain in the left side of his neck and tingling in his left arm.
Kenneth was admitted overnight during which time his condition deteriorated and he developed a fever. He was evaluated by the hospital´s infectious disease specialist – Bonnie Rabinowitch – who identified symptoms of a spinal cord epidural abscess and ordered an MRI.
However, radiologist Ben-Zion Friedman and neurologist Hussam Yacoub failed to identify a cervical abscess on Kenneth´s spine and an emergency operation was avoidably delayed – surgery only being conducted at Rabinowitch´s insistence.
Due to the avoidable delay in undergoing surgery to remove the abscess, Kenneth is now paralyzed from the chest down and has lost the function of his bowel and bladder. He is unable to wash, clothe or feed himself and has to rely on his wife Elizabeth for all his daily needs.
Kenneth made a compensation claim for paralysis due to medical negligence of the three doctors primarily responsible for his treatment – Rabinowitch, Friedman and Yacoub. The three defendants denied their liability for Kenneth´s paralysis, arguing that the outcome would have been no different had he undergone surgery sooner.
The claim for paralysis due to medical negligence went to the Court of Common Please, where it was heard by a jury over two weeks. At the end of the hearing the jury found in Kenneth´s favor, attributing Friedman 67 percent liability and Yacoub 33 percent liability for his injuries. Rabinowitch was not considered to have contributed to the medical negligence.
The jury awarded Kenneth almost $12 million compensation in settlement of his claim for paralysis due to medical negligence to account for his past and future medical expenses, his loss of income and loss of amenity. Elizabeth was awarded $500,000 compensation for her loss of consortium.