$40 Million Jury Verdict for Above Knee Amputation Caused by Failure to Prescribe Blood Thinner

Peter Sfameni, 55, stopped taking Warfarin before he underwent a colonoscopy and chose not to resume taking the medication after the procedure. He developed lower back pain, fatigue and weight loss, which prompted a trip to Rhode Island Hospital’s emergency room. He was admitted to the hospital, underwent a bone marrow biopsy and was scheduled for a lymph node biopsy. He was discharged with instructions not to take his blood thinners until a week after the upcoming lymph node biopsy.

Sfameni developed severe blood clots in his legs and lungs before the date of the biopsy. Sfameni returned to the hospital where doctors diagnosed gangrene in his right leg, which required an above-the-knee amputation.

Sfameni spent five months in the hospital, followed by four months in rehabilitation. He now uses a prosthesis and experiences constant phantom pain, anxiety and depression.

He sued the internal medicine physician and oncologist who attended him during the first hospital admission, both physicians’ employers and the hospital claiming that these defendants chose not to prescribe Lovenox to prevent blood clots from forming before the planned lymph node biopsy. There was no claim for lost income in the lawsuit.

The jury awarded $40 million finding that the defendants were jointly and severally liable. During the time that post-trial motions were pending, the parties to this lawsuit settled for an undisclosed amount of money.

The attorney successfully handling this lawsuit for Sfameni was Michael P. Quinn. At trial, the plaintiff presented an expert in hematology, while the defendants presented experts in hematology and internal medicine.

Sfameni v. Ryan, No. PC-2013-1368 (R.I. Super. Ct. Providence County).

Kreisman Law Offices has been handling hospital negligence lawsuits, medical malpractice lawsuits, wrongful death cases and birth trauma injury cases for individuals, families and their loved ones who have been injured, harmed or killed by the negligence or carelessness of a medical provider for more than 40 years, in and around Chicago, Cook County and its surrounding areas, including Oak Forest, Orland Park, Countryside, Burr Ridge, LaGrange Park, Stickney, Berwyn, Villa Park, Clarendon Hills, Morton Grove, Winnetka, Lockport, Harvey, Calumet City, Chicago (Lakeview, Lakewood Balmoral, Lincoln Bend, Kenwood, Kelvyn Park, Jefferson Park, Irving Park, Beverly, Back of the Yards, Magnificent Mile, McKinley Park, North Town, Chinatown, Pill Hill, South Chicago, University of Chicago, UIC, Armour Square), Bedford Park, Summit and Alsip, Ill.

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