Typically, in a medical malpractice case, the injured party will rely on medical records and testimony to establish that the defendant’s behavior led to the patient’s harm. In some instances, however, in a case where there is a lack of concrete evidence, a defendant may try to avoid liability by presenting evidence regarding regular practices or procedures that demonstrate compliance with the standard of care. Recently, a New York court discussed when evidence of habit might be relevant and admissible in a case in which the plaintiff suffered harm due to a negligent cardiovascular surgeon. If you suffered injuries due to the carelessness of a heart doctor, it is wise to speak to a trusted Syracuse cardiovascular surgery malpractice attorney regarding your possible causes of action.
Facts of the Case
It is reported that the plaintiff underwent multiple cardiac surgeries, which were performed by the defendant cardiovascular surgeon. Following his procedures, he was placed on medications that reduced the likelihood of blood clots and he was directed to remain on the drugs indefinitely. Seven years later, he was ordered to undergo a colonoscopy and was directed to stop taking the medication prior to the procedure.
Allegedly, the plaintiff’s wife spoke to the defendant, who approved of the plaintiff stopping the medication. The plaintiff ceased taking the prescriptions and underwent the procedure. Five days later, he suffered a heart attack. The plaintiff then sued the defendant alleging, in part, that he was negligent in approving the stoppage of the medication. The case proceeded to trial, and a jury found in favor of the defendant, after which the plaintiff appealed.