Doctors Found Negligent for Choosing Not To Timely Address Neurological Emergency

Butch Borden, 51, underwent lower back surgery by neurosurgeon Dr. Tom Staner. While Borden was recuperating, he developed weakness and sensory deficits in his legs. Dr. Staner instructed Borden to go to Brookwood Medical Center, where testing there revealed a small hematoma in the lower back. A hematoma is where a pool of blood gathers in an area of the body for different reasons. Borden was then admitted to the hospital.

While overnight in that hospital, Borden developed urinary incontinence and lost the use of both legs. This development was not communicated to any of Borden’s treating physicians, including Dr. Staner.

The next morning, however, Dr. Staner examined Borden and ordered an urgent CT scan and myelogram, which showed a large hematoma, another pool of collecting blood, compressing Borden’s cauda equina. The cauda equina, which is Latin for horse’s tail, is a bundle of spinal nerves and spinal nerve roots that run through the second to fifth lumbar nerves in the back. The compression of the cauda equina is a serious neurological condition and can cause loss of function. The cauda equina syndrome is caused by the compression of nerves at the end of the spinal cord.

Despite emergency surgery to relieve that nerve pressure, Borden now suffers from permanent impotence and incontinence. Borden was a logistics supervisor earning about $52,000 a year. He has not returned to his job.

Borden and his wife brought a lawsuit against the hospital alleging failure to diagnose and timely treat his neurological emergency. It was claimed that had surgery been done 12 hours earlier, Borden’s outcome would have been significantly better.

After the jury trial, the juror signed a verdict for $7.5 million, which included $2.5 million to Borden’s wife for loss of consortium. The attorneys representing the Borden family were S. Shay Samples and Ashley Reitz Peinhardt.

Borden v. Staner, No. CV-2012-902811.00 (Ala., Jefferson Co. Cir. Feb. 28, 2012).

Kreisman Law Offices has been handling medical negligence cases, physician malpractice cases and nursing 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 38 years in and around Chicago, Cook County and its surrounding areas, including Highwood, Deerfield, Northfield, Golf, Morton Grove, Des Plaines, Prospect Heights, Vernon Hills, Orland Park, Hickory Hills, Libertyville, North Chicago, Lake Bluff, Lake Forest, Park Ridge, Winnetka, New Lenox and Wilmette, Ill.

Related blog posts:

Illinois Jury Finds for Radiologist in Missed Brain Mass in CT Scan

Jury Verdict for Stroke Victim after Doctor Chooses Not to Correctly Diagnose Impending Stroke

Misdiagnosed Pulmonary Embolism Brings Verdict of $2.75 Million