Brookyn Defense Verdict in Stroke Case 2022

Andrew Garson finished 2022 with his seventh medical malpractice verdict for the year, a victory for NYC Health & Hospitals Corporation on behalf of Coney Island Hospital and an attending Emergency Department physician. The case had been forwarded to Garson & Jakub on the eve of trial, after Plaintiff’s counsel made a four million dollar demand for settlement, alleging severe, permanent neurologic injuries she experienced at age 33 after suffering a major stroke which was not timely diagnosed and treated. Plaintiff testified that she presented to the Emergency Room with classic signs of a stroke—right-sided weakness, a lack of coordination, imbalance in muscle strength, and impaired standing and walking. She claimed she waited 3 hours in the Emergency Room without any treatment, evaluation or diagnostic testing. She testified she was seen briefly but not examined by a physician, who advised there was a lengthy delay in obtaining CT scans that evening. Reportedly, she was informed that she could wait in her nearby home, and return the next morning. The defense presented records from the Hospital, indicating that plaintiff was thoroughly evaluated in the Emergency Room. Additionally, the records referenced that while she was being monitored and awaiting further studies, she walked out of the hospital without notifying anyone nor being authorized to leave. The next morning, she awoke at home with severe right sided paralysis, slurred speech, drooping facial features and cognitive difficulties. She presented at a different hospital, where she was admitted for several weeks, and then transferred for rehabilitation and convalescence to a specialty center. At trial, Plaintiff maintained that her life had been dramatically altered in all aspects—she had paralysis of her right arm and leg and could not properly stand, walk, hold objects; her coordination was severely impaired; she was unable to perform self-care, hygiene, physical activities in a normal fashion; could not properly care for her daughter; was not able to perform her usual work; and at age 40 became a prisoner trapped in her own body. The defense introduced records challenging the extent of Plaintiff’s claimed injuries, and argued that she had made considerable improvement in all aspects of her daily activities and neuromuscular function. Despite these emotionally compelling circumstances, a Brooklyn jury found in favor of the defendants on the eve of the December holidays.