Cunningham, Meyer & Vedrine secured a victory on behalf of a neurosurgeon and hospital involved in a case in which a woman experienced extensive complications following a brain aneurysm procedure.
In February 2007, the patient, who was then 31, presented to the hospital complaining of vomiting, neck and head pain. She was assessed by the defendant neurosurgeon who determined that the patient had a ruptured aneurysm which required surgery.
The defendant presented two options for methods of surgery: to clip or coil the aneurysm. Clipping was determined to be the preferred method as the neurosurgeon had the most experience with that type of procedure.
During the surgery, the defendant encountered bleeding complications, and the patient was taken to another hospital where the aneurysm was coiled by a neuroradiologist. Following that procedure, the patient suffered a “catastrophic” stroke, leaving her with partial paralysis, speech impediments and cognitive deficits.
In 2009, the plaintiff filed suit against both doctors and hospitals but voluntarily dismissed the suit before trial. The plaintiff refiled in 2015 against the defendant neurosurgeon and the hospital alleging that the defendant did not fully assess whether coiling the aneurysm was a safer method than clipping.
The plaintiff argued that coiling the aneurysm may have led to fewer complications. The plaintiff demanded $23 million in damages.
The defense contended that, although coiling is more common today, at the time of the procedure clipping was within the standard of care.
After an almost four-week trial, the jury deliberated only an hour before returning a verdict for the defense.
The case was featured in the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin, available here