$1.91 Million Jury Verdict for Failure to Perform Pulmonary Embolism Risk Assessment

William Andrews, 46, suffered from orthopedic injuries, including a hip fracture that he suffered in an ATV crash. He went to a hospital emergency room where he was placed in a knee immobilizer and was instructed to stay non-weight bearing. At a later doctor’s appointment with an orthopedist, he was diagnosed as having a fractured wrist and was referred to an orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Jeffrey Gelfand.

Several days later, Dr. Gelfand met with Andrews and his wife who informed the doctor of Andrews’s hip fracture and immobility. Dr. Gelfand recommended that Andrews undergo surgical repair of the wrist fracture. This was scheduled for approximately ten days later.

Andrews remained immobile before the surgery and did not leave his house. The morning of the wrist surgery, Andrews’s wife found him on the floor of their bedroom, where he had died. The later autopsy showed that Andrews had died from a saddle pulmonary embolism.

Andrews had been a welder earning more than $37,000 a year and was survived by his wife and two minor children.

His widow, individually and on behalf of his estate, sued Dr. Gelfand alleging that he chose not to complete a DVT (deep vein thrombosis)-pulmonary embolism risk assessment, recognize that Andrews was at high risk for pulmonary embolism, prescribe anticoagulants, and inform Andrews about the signs and symptoms of DVT or pulmonary embolism.

DVT refers to deep vein thrombosis, which is a blood clot that forms in a vein deep in the body. Most deep vein clots occur in a lower leg or a thigh. If the vein swells, the condition is called thrombophlebitis. A deep vein thrombosis can break loose and cause a serious problem in the lung — a pulmonary embolism that can be deadly.

Following this jury trial, the jury signed a verdict for $1.91 million.

At trial, the Andrews family attorneys presented experts in internal medicine, orthopedic surgery, hematology and economics.

The defendants’ attorneys presented experts in pulmonary medicine and orthopedic surgery.

The attorneys who successfully handled this tragic case were Karl J. Protil Jr. and Donald J. Carswell Jr.

Andrews v. Gelfand, No. CAL16-37851 (Md. Cir. Ct. Prince George’s County).

Kreisman Law Offices has been handling pulmonary embolism lawsuits, wrongful death cases, physician negligence cases, vascular surgery negligence lawsuits, traumatic brain injury cases and hospital negligence lawsuits for individuals, families and loved ones who have been harmed, injured or died as a result of the carelessness or negligence of a medical provider for more than 40 years in and around Chicago, Cook County and its surrounding areas, including Carol Stream, Elk Grove Village, Arlington Heights, Naperville, St. Charles, Geneva, Batavia, Bolingbrook, Countryside, Lockport, Plainfield, New Lenox, Frankfort, Tinley Park, Oak Lawn, Glencoe, Lake Zurich, Vernon Hills, Round Lake Beach, North Chicago, Chicago (Lower West Side, Little Village, Oakland, Kenwood, Hyde Park, South Shore, Englewood, Chatham, Washington Heights, Chicago Lawn, Mount Greenwood, West Pullman, Morgan Park, Beverly, McKinley Park, Near West Side, Little Italy, River West, Old Town, Humboldt Park, Logan Square, Jefferson Park, Bucktown, Roscoe Village, Dunning), Elmwood Park, Franklin Park, Northlake, Park Forest and Oak Forest, Ill.

Robert D. Kreisman has been an active member of the Illinois and Missouri bars since 1976.

Related blog posts:

$1.8 Million Wrongful Death Settlement for Failure to Diagnose Pulmonary Embolism

$12 Million Jury Verdict for Wrongful Death and Medical Negligence in Failure to Diagnose and Treat Deep Vein Thrombosis

Illinois Appellate Court Affirms Jury Verdict Ruling that Defendant Doctor’s Closing Argument Comments Did Not Cause Substantial Prejudice