Lewis Johs Avallone Aviles, LLP (New York, NY) partner Michael T. Colavecchio obtained a defendant's verdict on behalf of his client, an infectious disease doctor, before Justice Arthur Pitts on December 8, 2010.
The case involved a claim that the defendant failed to diagnose endocarditis in the then 49 year old woman. The plaintiff suffered a cardiac arrest on the day she was discharged from the hospital, dying within a few hours thereafter. The plaintiff claimed that the defendant misdiagnosed the decedent with pyelonephritis, and that it was obvious that the patient had endocarditis that required immediate cardiac surgery. Mr. Colavecchio argued that because a trans-thoracic echocardiogram did not show endocarditis, the only means of diagnosis was performance of a trans-esophageal echocardiogram (TEE), a test that was recommended by the cardiology consultant but refused by the patient. The cardiologist had previously been dismissed from the case on a summary judgment motion, and the codefendant primary care doctor, who discharged the patient, settled for $425,000 prior to the trial.
The jury unanimously found in the defendant’s favor.