Osteomylitis of the Spine, Spinal Deterioration and Deformity, Permanent Disability
Injuries: Osteomylitis of the Spine, Spinal Deterioration and Deformity, Permanent Disability
Facts and Claim of Liability:
On November 3, 2005, plaintiff began to feel ill while he was at work. His skin was warm to the touch, and he had body aches. The next day, he woke up with severe lower back pain, a fever, and chills. He went to Defendant Hospital North Central Bronx Hospital, where a number of tests were run. He was given a muscle relaxer, and told that he’d likely pulled a muscle at work. He was then sent home.
However, the next day, the pain was even worse. Plaintiff returned to defendant hospital, and was again given a muscle relaxer, and then sent home.
On November 11, plaintiff presented to defendant hospital complaining of severe pain, fever, and chills. He was admitted, and a number of tests were again run. This time, he was told that there was a mass in the space between the fifth thoracic vertebra and tenth thoracic vertebra in his spine. Plaintiff remained in the hospital for about a month.
Eventually, in December, plaintiff was discharged from the hospital. However, the following month, on January 4, plaintiff began to experience excruciating pain, and was transported to defendant hospital via ambulance. Doctors first suspected tuberculosis, but ruled this out. Doctors also suspected cancer, but this was ruled out as well. Finally, the following month, plaintiff recalls that one of the many doctors treating him suspected that he had an infection, and started him on antibiotics. Plaintiff recalls that he began feeling better almost immediately.
Eventually, in March, plaintiff was again discharged from the hospital. He remained on antibiotics for seven weeks. However, he still experienced lower back pain. Plaintiff went to see another doctor, and was told that because the infection had advanced and spread, it had caused osteomylitis of the spine with spinal deterioration and deformity. As a consequence, about a week and a half later, plaintiff underwent spinal reconstruction surgery.
Currently, plaintiff is permanently disabled. He cannot work, and has persistent pain and other disabilities, all of which are permanent.
Fitzgerald & Fitzgerald filed suit in Bronx County Supreme Court, arguing that defendant hospital departed from good and accepted medical practice in the care of plaintiff in failing to timely diagnose and treat plaintiff’s back infection, which ultimately resulted in plaintiff suffering severe and permanent injuries. Ultimately, Fitzgerald & Fitzgerald settled with defendant for a total of $900,000.00.