Texas Health Presbyterian Flower Mound was willfully and wantonly negligent for causing the permanent paralysis of a Flower Mound woman, a Dallas County jury recently found. According to Denton Record-Chronicle, the jury awarded $10.1 million to the woman.
About the Case
According to the woman’s legal complaint, she was injured on March 21, 2019, after she received an epidural steroid injection from a pain management doctor. She suffered a complication from the injection, resulting in a hemorrhage. She was taken to Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Flower Mound for emergency treatment.
However, her treatment was delayed two and a half hours due to poor communication between the nursing and radiology staff, which caused a delayed STAT order for an MRI. This resulted in permanent paralysis in her lower limbs. Hospital policies require emergency surgeries to occur within one hour.
The jury found the hospital responsible for the woman’s permanent injuries, which were a result of the “conscious indifference” to the patient’s safety and “willful and wanton” negligence on the part of the hospital.
According to District of Columbia Code § 16–2801(2), medical malpractice occurs when a healthcare provider provides negligent care that causes injury to a patient. This negligence can stem from many different types of healthcare providers, including:
- Nurse practitioners
- Nursing facilities
- Hospice programs
Some of the common acts or omissions that lead to claims of medical malpractice include:
- Birth injury errors
- Diagnostic errors
- Failure to timely treat injuries
- Medication errors
- Surgical errors
The Law Offices of Dr. Michael M. Wilson, M.D., J.D. & Associates routinely handles cases involving these grave mistakes. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation.
Spinal Cord Injury Treatment
Part of the reason why a jury would award so much to a victim in this type of case is that spinal cord injuries are expensive to treat. The woman is left with permanent, catastrophic injuries that will require lifelong treatment.
According to the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation, people with high tetraplegia can expect to pay $1,163,425 in care for the first year. People with low tetraplegia can expect to pay $840,676 for first-year care. Paraplegia costs amount to approximately $567,001 for the first year of care, while injuries that produce incomplete motor function at any level come in at about $379,698 for first-year care.
For each following year, individuals with spinal cord injuries can expect to pay the following amounts:
- High tetraplegia – $202,032
- Low tetraplegia – $123,938
- Paraplegia – $75,112
- Incomplete motor function at any level – $46,119
The lifetime costs of a spinal cord injury depend on several factors, including the type of injury, the initial emergency treatment costs, and how old the person was before they were injured. Estimated lifetime costs for people who suffer a spinal cord injury at age 50 are:
- High tetraplegia – $2,537,031
- Low tetraplegia – $2,319,998
- Paraplegia – $1,656,602
- Incomplete motor function at any level – $1,217,226
These costs increase if the victim suffers the injury at a younger age and requires more years of treatment. The estimated lifetime costs for people who suffer a spinal cord injury at age 25 are:
- High tetraplegia – $5,162,152
- Low tetraplegia – $3,771,791
- Paraplegia – $2,524,270
- Incomplete motor function at any level – $1,724,594
These estimates only represent the medical costs associated with these injuries. They do not include indirect costs, such as wage loss, fringe benefits, and productivity, which averaged $78,633 annually based on 2020 dollars. Nor do they factor in the significant emotional and mental turmoil these injuries cause victims and their families.
Contact a Medical Malpractice Lawyer for Help
If you were injured by the negligent actions of a healthcare provider, The Law Offices of Dr. Michael M. Wilson, M.D., J.D. & Associates can help. We provide a free consultation to discuss your legal rights and options. Contact us today to get started on your path to recovery.
Dr. Michael M. Wilson is an attorney and a physician who earned his undergraduate degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and his legal and medical degrees from Georgetown University. He has focused in the area of medical malpractice for more than three decades and secured more than $100 million in settlements and verdicts on behalf of clients throughout the country. He is admitted to practice in the District of Columbia and New York as well as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia and the U.S. Supreme Court. He is listed in America’s Top 100 High Stakes Litigators.