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Court Explains Establishing Liability in a New York Medical Malpractice Case

The standard of care imposed on medical professionals is beyond the understanding of most laypeople, and parties in medical malpractice cases will often rely on reports from medical experts to support their positions. Thus, the success of a plaintiff’s medical malpractice claim often hinges on which party’s expert offers a more compelling opinion. A plaintiff’s expert’s opinions must be based on fact and sound reasoning, however; otherwise, they will be deemed insufficient to demonstrate a defendant’s liability, as illustrated in a recent New York ruling issued in a proctology malpractice case. If you were harmed by a negligent proctologist, you should speak to a Syracuse proctologist malpractice attorney to discuss what evidence you must produce to recover damages.

The Plaintiff’s Harm

It is reported that the plaintiff suffered from rectal bleeding with bowel movements. He was subsequently diagnosed with hemorrhoids. He was then treated with the defendant, who ultimately recommended a hemorrhoidectomy. The defendant reported that the procedure went well, and all three of the defendant’s hemorrhoids were reduced. In the days that followed, however, the plaintiff began to experience rectal bleeding and fecal leakage. He eventually filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against the defendant, alleging he departed from the good and accepted practice of medicine, thereby causing the plaintiff to suffer harm. Following discovery, the defendant moved for summary judgment.

Establishing Liability in a Medical Malpractice Case

The court granted the defendant’s motion and dismissed the plaintiff’s complaint. The court explained that a plaintiff in a medical malpractice action must prove that the defendant deviated from the accepted community standards of the practice of medicine and that the deviation proximately caused the plaintiff’s harm.

To prevail on a motion for summary judgment, then, a defendant must show, prima facie, that there was no departure from the accepted and good practice of medicine or that any alleged deviation did not cause the plaintiff’s harm. If the defendant makes a prima facie showing as to both elements, the plaintiff must raise a triable issue of fact as to either the element of the cause of action or the theory that the defendant is not liable.

Conclusory allegations that are not supported by competent evidence that tends to establish the essential elements of a malpractice claim are insufficient to defeat a defendant’s motion for summary judgment, however. In the subject case, the court found that the defendant met his prima facie burden. In response, though, the plaintiff set forth an expert opinion that was devoid of analysis and did not address the defendant’s specific allegations. Thus, the court granted the defendant’s motion.

Speak to an Experienced Syracuse Lawyer

If a proctologist performs a procedure in a careless manner, it can cause a patient to suffer painful injuries and embarrassing symptoms. If you were hurt by proctologist malpractice, you might be entitled to compensation, and it is in your best interest to speak to an attorney regarding your rights. The experienced Syracuse attorneys of DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers are proficient at handling complex medical malpractice cases, and if you hire us, we will advocate aggressively on your behalf. You can reach us through our form online or by calling us at 833-247-8427 to set up a conference.





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