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New York Court Discusses Evidence Demonstrating Medical Malpractice

In some instances, the negligence of a medical professional is so egregious that it is clear it constitutes medical malpractice. In such cases, while it may not be disputed that the standard of care was breached, there may be disagreement as to which party was liable for the breach, and ultimately for the plaintiff’s harm. This was demonstrated in a recent gynecologic malpractice case in which the plaintiff suffered harm due to a one year delay in receiving the results of a breast biopsy. If you suffered harm due to a gynecological error, it is prudent to speak with a zealous Syracuse gynecologic malpractice attorney to discuss your potential claims.

Facts of the Case

It is reported that the majority of the facts of the case are undisputed. Specifically, the plaintiff was a patient of the defendant gynecologist. Following her annual visit, she was referred to the defendant radiologist for a biopsy. After the biopsy was performed, the specimen was sent to the defendant lab, where it was analyzed and determined to show cancerous cells. The defendant lab faxed the test results to the defendant physician that performed the biopsy, who then faxed a report to the defendant gynecologist, stating that the procedure had been performed and reporting the positive findings.

Allegedly, approximately one year later, the defendant gynecologist again referred the plaintiff for a biopsy, after which he was faxed the pathology report from the initial biopsy. He then finally advised the plaintiff of the results of her initial biopsy. The plaintiff subsequently filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against the defendants. The defendant lab filed a motion to dismiss, arguing that the plaintiff could not recover against it under the undisputed facts of the case. The court ultimately denied the motion.

Evidence Demonstrating the Lab’s Malpractice

Under the relevant law, the plaintiff was required to show that each defendant departed from the accepted standard of care and that the departure proximately caused her delayed diagnosis, in order to demonstrate liability for medical malpractice. The plaintiff’s complaint alleged that the defendants were reckless and careless and that their failure to advise the plaintiff that she had breast cancer resulted in significant complications. The court found these allegations to be sufficient to allow the plaintiff to proceed with her medical malpractice claim against the lab.

The defendant lab argued that pursuant to New York case law, a lab could not be held liable for failing to advise a patient of a cancer diagnosis when the patient’s physician received the results as well. The court noted that while the documentary evidence produced by the defendant lab raised a question of fact as to whether it should be held liable for the plaintiff’s harm, it did not definitively exonerate the lab. As such, the court denied the motion.

Meet with a Dedicated Syracuse Attorney

If you suffered harm due to a gynecologist’s failure to provide you with a proper diagnosis in a timely manner, it is advisable to speak to an attorney about your right to pursue damages. The dedicated Syracuse gynecologic malpractice attorneys of DeFrancisco & Falgiatano, LLP Personal Injury Lawyers are proficient in helping people injured by medical negligence seek compensation for their losses, and we will work tirelessly on your behalf. You can contact us through our form online or at 315-479-9000 to set up a conference.

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