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$2,900,000 Jury Verdict Awarded to Cancer Patient

Practice Area: Medical Malpractice

Outcome: $2,900,000

Description: Doctor failed to diagnose a child’s condition in a timely fashion. The plaintiff in this case had a history of unexplained swelling under his arms. In fact, he underwent a biopsy at age three for swelling on his right side. The biopsy was negative for lymphoma, and the doctor concluded nothing was wrong. The plaintiff returned to the doctor’s office in 1992, with a similar swelling, this time, under the left armpit. An x-ray and consultation with the physician who did the previous biopsy were performed. All indications were negative and no follow-up was recommended. Two years later, the child returned with an unexplained mass under the left armpit. This time the plaintiff was diagnosed with Stage III-A Hodgkin’s disease. The patient underwent a first round of chemotherapy, which was ineffective. The plaintiff then underwent a second round of more intensive therapy, which resulted in the remission of the cancer, but also rendered the patient sterile. The plaintiff contended that had he been diagnosed with the disease when he had first visited the doctor in 1992, the disease would only have been at stage one, and therefore would not have required such intensive treatment. The defendant denied that there was anything he could have done earlier than he did, since there were no definitive test results to act upon. Dan Buttafuoco was able to provide enough evidence for the jury to see that the plaintiff was in fact due multi-million dollar compensation for medical expenses, injury and lost wage compensation.

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