$2 Million Court Award in Failure to Timely Diagnose Breast Cancer

Melissa Avilez suffered from breast lumps and pain. She consulted a certified nurse midwife, Kerry-Ann Dacosta, who worked for Urban Health Plan, a federally funded clinic.

Although Avilez sought treatment from Nurse Dacosta nine times in 2015 and 2016, she was not referred to a breast surgeon.

In 2017, Avilez was diagnosed as having metastatic cancer. Before she died at age 26, Avilez sued Nurse Dacosta and the United States under the Federal Torts Claims Act (FTCA) alleging that the nurse midwife, Dacosta, chose not to follow up on her breast findings, perform a breast exam; refer Ms. Avilez to a breast surgeon; or order radiological testing, including an ultrasound.

The Avilez family claimed that the defendants’ negligence led to an approximately year-long delay in diagnosing Avilez’s cancer. Avilez died during the litigation. Her estate brought these claims.

The court awarded $2 million in a bench trial finding Avilez 50% responsible. The judgment amount included stipulated income loss in approximately $237,500.

The attorney handling this case for the Avilez family was Stanley Landers.

Avilez v. Santiago, No. 1:18-CV-09270 (S.D. N.Y.).

Kreisman Law Offices has been handling misdiagnosis of cancer cases, misdiagnoses of breast cancer lawsuits, medical malpractice cases, birth injury lawsuits and wrongful death cases 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 45 years in and around Chicago, Cook County and its surrounding areas, including Barrington Hills, Long Grove, Bannockburn, Arlington Heights, Elgin, Joliet, Romeoville, Crystal Lake, Cary, Round Lake Beach, Waukegan, Lake Bluff, Mundelein, Wheeling, Prospect Heights, Glenview, Wilmette, Niles, Skokie, Chicago (Near North Side, Little Italy, Little Village, Garfield Park, Back of the Yards, Kenwood, Woodlawn, Douglas, South Shore, Hyde Park, Grand Crossing, Calumet Heights, Chatham, Wrightwood, Ashburn, Mount Greenwood, West Pullman, Morgan Park), Bolingbrook, Bridgeview, Hickory Hills, Country Club Hills, Mokena and Frankfort, Ill.

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

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