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New York Appellate Division Affirms Summary Judgment to Doctor in Otolaryngology Malpractice Lawsuit

New York medical malpractice lawsuits can involve many different types of injury to the body – even wrongful death. One recent case involved a claim brought by a woman who believed that she had suffered loss to her hearing and other injuries due to her doctor’s allegedly negligent treatment of an ear infection.

Unfortunately, both the trial court and the appellate court sided with the woman’s doctor, finding that no actionable medical negligence had occurred.

Facts of the Case

A case recently considered by the Supreme Court of the State of New York, Appellate Division, Second Judicial Department, involved a medical malpractice claim brought by the plaintiff patient against the defendant doctor seeking compensation for hearing loss that the plaintiff allegedly suffered due to the defendant’s negligent prescription of a certain medication to treat an ear infection. The plaintiff further averred that the defendant had failed to instruct her properly as to the administration of the drug at issue.

The defendant filed a motion for summary judgment. The trial court granted the defendant’s motion and dismissed the plaintiff’s case. The plaintiff appealed, disputing both the correctness of the trial court’s decision to grant summary judgment to the defendant and also its denial of her motion for leave to renew her opposition to the defendant’s motion.

The Outcome of the Case on Appeal

The appellate court affirmed, agreeing with the lower tribunal’s denial of the plaintiff’s motion for leave to renew her opposition to the defendant’s motion for summary judgment, holding that the plaintiff had failed to meet her burden of providing new facts or demonstrating a material change in the law.

The appellate court also affirmed the lower court’s entry of summary judgment to the defendant on the plaintiff’s malpractice claim. According to the court, the defendant had established, through an expert otolaryngology witness, his prima facie entitlement to judgment as a matter of law. In so holding, the court noted that the defendant had demonstrated that his treatment of the plaintiff’s ear infection with the medication about which she complained was in accordance with good and accepted standards of medical practice. The court also found that, for the sake of argument, even if the defendant’s treatment of the plaintiff’s condition departed from good medical practice, the plaintiff had failed to show that the defendant’s alleged malpractice was the proximate cause of the tinnitus, hearing loss, and/or perforation of the tympanic membrane for which she sought monetary compensation.

Do You Have a Possible Malpractice Claim?

At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano, LLP,  we handle many different kinds of Syracuse medical malpractice cases, including those arising from alleged otolaryngology malpractice, anesthesia errors, and mistakes in emergency room treatment. To schedule an appointment to get started on your case, call us now at 319-479-9000. Keep in mind that New York has a statute of limitations that limits the time to file a claim against a negligent doctor or hospital. If you have been hurt due to medical negligence, your claim can be dismissed if it is not filed within this time period.

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