$12.2 Million Jury Verdict for Excessive Administration of Antiarrhythmic Medicine

Lee Lyman was 51 years old when he underwent successful aortic valve surgery at Sacred Heart River Bend Medical Center.  Anesthesia was provided by Dr. Albert Cho of Northwest Anesthesia, P.C. While in the operating room, Lyman began to experience ventricular fibrillation. He was given electrical shock and prescribed medications, which included 150 milligrams of antiarrhythmic Amiodarone, to be given over a 30-minute period.

Instead of giving the prescribed dose, Dr. Cho gave Lyman 2,700 milligrams of Amiodarone, which came from a combination of 3 separate 900-mg bottles. After Lyman received the excessive dose, his heart stopped pumping adequate blood. This led to anoxic brain damage and partial paralysis. Lyman will need 24-hour per day care for the rest of his life. He had been a millwright earning about $21 per hour before the surgery.

Lyman, through a representative for his disabled person’s estate, brought a lawsuit against the corporation that owned the hospital, Dr. Cho and Northwest Anesthesia claiming negligent administration of an excessive dose of Amiodarone.

Lyman’s representative also charged that the hospital chose not to train its anesthesiologist on the proper use of its medication delivery system, failed to warn medical practitioners that the Amiodarone was supplied in multi-dose containers and were also negligent in supplying such bottles to anesthesiologists.

Additionally, the lawsuit claimed that Northwest Anesthesiology negligently assigned Dr. Cho to Lyman’s surgery and chose not to follow safety procedures. It was also maintained that Dr. Cho failed to follow the surgeon’s order to read the drug’s label before administering it to Lyman, his patient.

The jury signed a verdict for $12,200,000 apportioning liability at 60% to the hospital, 35% to Dr. Cho and 15% to Northwest Anesthesia.

The attorneys that handled this case so successfully were Don Corson, Derek Johnson, Laura Johnson and Jet Harris.

Friedenberg v. Peacehealth, No. 161413229 (Or. Cir. Ct. Lane County).

Kreisman Law Offices has been handling hospital negligence cases, birth trauma injury cases, brain injury cases, wrongful death cases and medical malpractice cases for individuals and families 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 Morton Grove, Niles, Des Plaines, Deerfield, Rolling Meadows, Oak Park, Oak Forest, Lemont, New Lenox, Naperville, Aurora, Joliet, Waukegan, Winfield, Fox River Grove, Franklin Park, Frankfurt and Brookfield, Ill.

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