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New York Woman’s Medical Malpractice Case Against Hospital and Others Dismissed on Appeal

Each Syracuse medical malpractice case rests on its own unique set of facts. In some cases, it is alleged that a doctor failed to make a proper medical diagnosis and that a patient was harmed or died as a result.

Other cases pertain to procedures that were allegedly carried out in a careless or negligent fashion. Sometimes, the mistake may be glaringly obvious, such as a situation in which the wrong body part was removed or medical tools were left inside a patient’s body cavity. In other cases, an expert witness must painstakingly explain the alleged error to the jury so that they can understand the applicable standard of care and the manner in which it was supposedly breached.

Another possible claim in a medical negligence case involves a lack of informed consent. Under New York law, a physician or other medical professional has certain duties to explain both the risks and benefits of a particular medical procedure to a patient prior to him or her agreeing to such treatment.

Facts of the Case

An appellate case from the Supreme Court of Bronx County involved a claim by a woman who asserted that the defendant medical providers had committed medical malpractice against her. In her suit, she claimed that she had suffered certain dental injuries due to the defendant’s departure from the required standard of care for her treatment. The defendants filed a motion for summary judgment, alleging that the plaintiff had failed to assert a triable issue of fact. The trial court granted the defendants’ motion, and the plaintiff appealed.

The Court’s Opinion on Appeal

The New York Appellate Division, First Department, affirmed the lower court’s decision. The court began by acknowledging that the defendants had been relying upon the opinion of a certain medical expert, namely a “head and neck surgeon,” who opined that the defendant’s treatment of the plaintiff was within the good and accepted medical practice required by law during her treatment. The defendants’ expert further testified in his affidavit that the dental injury about which the plaintiff complained in her complaint for malpractice was a known risk of the procedure.

The plaintiff, in turn, had failed to present an opposing medical expert’s opinion and, instead, had relied upon the affidavit of an attorney. In the court’s view, this was not enough to overcome the reputable presumption in favor of the defendants based upon their expert’s opinion that there had been no medical negligence. With regard to the plaintiff’s claim that her medical records had been changed in some manner, apparently not specified to the court, the reviewing tribunal found this assertion to be both unsupported and speculative and certainly not grounds for reversal on appeal.

Talk to a Lawyer About a Malpractice Case in Syracuse

At the Syracuse medical malpractice law firm of DeFrancisco & Falgiatano, LLP, we handle many different types of medical malpractice lawsuits against healthcare practitioners throughout upstate New York. This includes not only neurosurgery malpractice claims but also cases against orthopedic surgeons, obstetricians/gynecologists, and oncologists. We also file claims against hospitals and other care facilities when necessary. For an appointment to discuss a possible claim, call us now at 833-200-2000 or use the contact form on this website. We look forward to serving your family’s legal needs.

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